Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Last Call?

I've been wondering whether or not to ask this of the readership, but the lack of content has gotten to the point where I can't avoid it...is it time to drink up and close the bar?

For one thing, I seem to be generating most of the recent posts; 20 out of the last 25. I neither want nor intended this to be "my" blog" but that seems to be happening, and I'm not sure I'm comfortable with that.

A lot of the original staff have finished their drinks and left, and many of the rest of us seems to be circling around the same old topics like late-night drinkers often do. Not sure if it's just being too familiar with each other, or the end of the conventional wars overseas the U.S. was fighting through the Oughts, or just having thrashed out all we want to argue about but the place seems to be getting a sort of deserted feel. Pageviews are dropping steadily. Fewer of us seem to be interested in stopping by.

My first thought is that I could step away from the bar; let the other folks here take over. Maybe the problem isn't "us" but too much of me.

But I guess my other thought is that if this is an "us" thing I'd rather we make it official and final, close up shop and take down the "Open for Business" sign than just sort of drift away into one of those ghost blogs, untenanted and forgotten.



  1. Chief,
    I often back off from posting b/c i felt that i did TOO much. I slacked off a while ago.
    My stuff doesn't seem to get a good reception so i just keep to a minimum.
    What ever you decide i will support, which means i will contribute more if it's within your guidance that RAW should do so.
    The problem is that the pub is out of balance.
    We are preaching to The choir.

  2. Chief,
    BTW- if it is last call then i get the roller derby queen.

  3. I'm fine with backing off as well, but I'd like to feel that the rest of the cadre will keep things going. If stepping back from the bar rail means that this place goes dark, my thought is, well, we SHOULD roll up the carpets and turn out the lights; let everyone find a new place to hang out...

    As for the whole circular route march thing, well...I think that's a feature, not a bug. Unlike public medias like newspapers and television stations blogs tend to find their niche. I don't hang out over at "Little Green Footballs" because I find that 98% of the shit over there just pisses me off; someone who loves him some LGF and some Rush probably doesn't want to spend time here tussling with us.

    I'd be fine with a relatively left-to-center-right crowd if I thought we were still DRAWING a crowd. But ISTM that we've really lost our mojo, especially lately. But it's hard for me on the inside looking out to judge critically; hence th request for outside evaluation.

  4. Chief,
    Sad to say , but the response to your question elicits your answer.
    Since we are only talking to each other this is a answer.

  5. Well I read this blog. But if contribution is a problem and you're the only one doing it then maybe it's time to close up shop.

  6. Leon: Thanks for the response; I appreciate your comments both here and over at GFT.

    jim: Yeah, that does kind of sum up the problem, doesn't it?

    I'm going to give this until Monday, and if there's no more interest than this then I think the end of the story pretty much writes itself.

  7. This is the same thing I've mentioned before and that is why I'm on a sabbatical from blogging . . . but I was planning on returning in the Fall. So, why not simply do the odd open thread until then?

    Gentlemen, this has been a successful blog imo and it would be a shame to close it down. In fact at this point in time I'm against closing it down. I understand you guys have other blogs. I don't. This is it and I will be posting here in the future. While I could probably find a new home on one of the strategy blogs, I'm not interested in leaving this one . . . it's kind homey . . . anyway that's my two bits . . .

  8. I guess I'm not saying that wouldn't work, but I think that blogging is a little like any other electronic media; it depends on some novelty to retain interest.

    Leaving the site inactive would be like Channel 2 broadcasting nothing but that indian-head test pattern (remember those?) 24/7. After the first couple of hours, or a day or so, viewers would turn on something else. They'd check back every day or so for a week, then once a week or so for a month, maybe, but pretty soon they'd conclude that the thing was dead.

    Here's the thing; since right before you hit the showers - 8 JAN 2013 - this site has had about 50 posts. Of those 50 I wrote 32. Jim wrote 5, you wrote one for a total of 38; meaning that if you took us out of the rota there would have been a total of 12 posts over 7 months or less than 2 per month. Of that 12 Al wrote 4, and Al hasn't posted since March. Basil wrote two but he's been on the DL since April, and PK Khans wrote 3 but he hasn't been here since May.

    So how about this as an alternative; how about jim and I retreat to our own blogs and see what happens? If the other writers step in, great, and the site stays lively.

    I'm not committed to killing the thing, just wondering if there's anyone else out there willing to work to keep it alive?

    So seydlitz is in (at least come the autumn).

    Anyone else?

  9. Hey all,

    I'm travelling and typing this in my phone, so ill be brief and please excuse mistakes.

    I would hate to see the site go, but do agree that it does, at times, feel a bit repetitive as far as our debates. In some ways that makes things stale, but in other ways it shows that the "regulars" are like old friends who know each other well.

    Personally, I've found myself visiting and, especially, commenting on blogs a lot less frequently. Lots of reasons for that, mainly work, family and some burnout. More generally it seems the trend these days is twitter and micro blogging sites, (medium.com is a recent, very cool example of the latter developed by the guys who originally made blogger) etc. a lot of sites seem to be undergoing changes these days. Personally I hate twitter's limitations, but its a good place to discover new stuff.

    This being the Internet and all, the barkeeps could always consider some kind of reboot, but it really depends on what you want this site to be. There's nothing wrong with infrequent content as long as the quality is good. Adding barkeeps is also an option since most on the list are MIA. Of course, recruiting talent may be tough. It certainly doesn't seem fair that Chief and Jim keep the place open while also running their own places.

    Whatever the case this site will be in my RSS feed as long as it exists and maybe even after, and Ill support whatever you decide to do.


  10. We have been rather busy this year with both travel and house guests, and I haven't really had the time to do more than comment. That will be the case until the summer visitors slack off. Don't give up the ghost yet, Chief.

  11. I suspect MilBlogs have an ebb tide in general.

    There are no fresh wars, the popular timeless topics of Milblogs have been covered, there are no exciting new toys or procurement controveries.

    My blog has entered a plateau in visitors/day years ago and I draw topics from everywhere and every era.

  12. Actually, LGF went liberal awhile back, so it became less interesting of a place - just another left-center echo chamber outside of some glibertarian leanings.

    It must be impossible to blog now. People's tendencies are to gravitate to fewer blogs, news sources and twitter. I think those that are successful were the bigger ones that aggregated other bloggers, like KOS, FDL or Balloon-Juice and can generate content all day long. And I get the sense that the blog era is passe like using the cell phone for calls or sending emails.

    IMO, the warring hasn't really stopped, they've just gotten cooler. Our views just got hip.

    I will say that milpub is not a regular anymore for me, nor GFT - but I do hope you stick to GFT. Your history posts are a goldmine of awesome. Your social commentary is always wise. These posts fill a void that I can't put my finger on - they're too long for 'nominal' blog attention span for workers stealing a browse and too short for a history class. But if it's gray or raining out, I'm there digging around.

    You personally are politically in a weird domain - practically liberal with some older conservative bents, but a raging progressive when up against the wall. I've discovered it is very uncommon for people over 40 to get more progressive - I think even John Cole has realized this, he used to do something weekly on FP or the wars, but after going on a rampage against his commenters over the "Courtesy Bombings" in Libya he's gotten quiet on anything not domestic.

    Pretty disconcerting to see all your former marching allies calling you a Qadafi Lover.

  13. Thanks to Al for coming along with sort of satisfying drink that he is famous for around here! Nice.

    As far as it goes, I'm more than fine with dialing back my input and letting the site cruise along for a while; as Sven points out, there is a tide in the affairs of men and blogs and there's no reason that just because we've ebbed some lately we can't rise again.

    But - and I know I've promised to do this in the past - I think what is critical is that I dial back my input. This was in danger of becoming "my" blog and I don't want that to happen. As srv delicately points out, my political views have moved left in the past twenty years to the point where I scorn Leon Trotsky as a capitalist tool - tho I'm kidding, I'm not kidding THAT much. To work as a "discussion" site, a latter-day Intel Dump, it needs less-polarizing source(s) of content, and that's not me (and it ain't you, either, jim, let's face it!).

    So...any of the other bar staff out there? Any hopes of enticing you guys back to the taps if jim and I are going to spend some time off?

  14. I have been doing the endless summer visiting grandkids and now even some of my grandkids children. So have been out of touch, Gomenasai. I vote with Seydlitz. Will try to post more when the ferris wheel slows down.

  15. This is a great site, Chief, among the much-too-many yes-men sites, and due in no small measure to your excellence as a leader. We all (though I've been a dreadful lurker) fight for our corner, and do so with elan, respect and information, for the most part :) We provoke in good humor, and even if there are spans with no posting, this sites deserves to stay alive, IMHO. Intel Dump is our progenitor, and in that spirit let's move forward.

    As I've mentioned before, I am humbled to have been invited to join, and I'm mighty intimidated by the depth and breadth of military knowledge here, but I deeply appreciate it. Hmmm, maybe there's some little lady stuff I might bring to the table ...

  16. I'm still here! I've been here since we left Intel Dump. While I haven't commented much, I still enjoy listening in. I'm a little disappointed that some of the rowdier regulars there didn't stop in for a drink. There were indeed some lively discussions there. But that doesn't mean we need to close. I'd be more afraid that the quality would suffer if everyone posted too often.

    My vote is to keep the bar open, at least for a

  17. I'd love to get more of your input, mike, and Lisa is a vastly underused member of our staff - I hope that stepping away from the taps will convince you both to bring us more of your good work.

    wourm: I think that we all have lost some of the fire inside that the fighting in the Middle East sparked in us. At this point - as Al speaks to in his recent post above this one - we seem to be, most of us, faced with nothing more than a series of ugly and dreary choices, all leading to a future less bright., meaner, and more constrained than we had hoped for. So I'm not sure whether the issue is our stars, ourselves, or our times.

  18. Chief and fellow drinkers,

    I've never been one to hit the bar every night. On the other hand, I do frequent this blog on a regular basis, and I have always enjoyed the comments, the people and the discussion topics.

    I will remain a member of this community until it closes. It's a great outlet and I, for one, appreciate the venue. I will continue to contribute, but I write best when I'm motivated by something. I've been considering writing some of my more general life observations, and I'll try to accelerate those writings so that there's some content in the mean time.

    Don't give up the blog, no splash without the FDC!

    PF Khans

  19. Like PF Khans, and Lisa, I read this site frequently, as in daily.

    For most of the time, though, like others, life has conspired against me, and so I have found myself working through some personal issues.

    This site...as small a group as us happy few make it is still, in my own humble opinion, a solid island of common sense in a wind blown sea of nonsense.

    A Chief, you sir, have been the backbone of us all.
    I'd buy you a basket of ales and a fine 2" steak if you lived closer by, but alas, suffice that good vibes I send your way.

    Hell, I wish everybody well!