Just two weeks shy of my two-year blogiversary, I've decided to lay this blog to rest. I have no intention of removing the archives from the web, as many a Googler seems to find something interesting here each and every day. But this will be my last post.
As some readers know, it's a move I've been considering for some time. At various times during this blog's history, I had decided to abandon it or put it on hold for reasons of personal frustration, broken laptops and site-specific ennui (the general form of which, ironically, this blog usually served to keep at bay).
This time my reasons are different, and it simply boils down to a rearrangement of priorities. I have never been at a loss for interesting things to do, and in fact the opposite is usually true — I have far less time to devote to my interests than I would like. As of today, I am publishing the regional sports news aggregator Oregon Sports Fan, preparing to publish a friend's first book, writing a recurring feature for the local blog DCist, and more. Meanwhile, I've been meaning to re-apply myself to freelance journalism, an endeavor in which I had one hit and failed to follow up. I once thought this blog would aid my freelancing, but that hasn't been the case. While I thought this would be a scratch pad of sorts, it has instead led me to draw conclusions and write about them before I had really done all my homework. After considering these facts for a couple months, I finally went ahead and did the only thing that made sense.
Let me note that this does not mean I am abandoning the blogosphere entirely. My non-political blog, the Washington Canard, will return from hiatus shortly after this valediction is posted. It is even highly probable that I will eventually return to political opinionating in a blog format, but I consider it somewhat unlikely that I'll continue to do so under this same moniker. Don't get me wrong — it's served me well. Everyone seems to like it. And while I occasionally point out that I neither own firearms (stupid DC gun ban) nor do I muck around with prophecy (no ESP here), there are other reasons.
Armed Prophet's raison d'etre was at the time of its inception was the invasion of Iraq (which I support as strongly today as I did then). The phrase comes from Machiavelli's The Prince: "All armed prophets succeed whereas unarmed ones fail." Well, actually I haven't read much Secretary Niccolo; I found it in Robert Kaplan's "Warrior Politics," which I was reading at the time and strongly recommend to anyone, but particularly to those unsure that we have the right to wage war pre-emptively. And such was the basis for my selection. As Uncle Junior once told Tony: "Come heavy, or not at all." Armed Prophet is a name appropriate to a warblogger, which I haven't been for some time.
But I've enjoyed the last two years with this blog. Armed Prophet provided a below-the-radar and mostly anonymous outlet for my observations while as I was getting my journalistic bearings in the District of Columbia, a place entirely unlike anywhere I've lived before. Armed Prophet is the closest thing to a diary that I've kept; when I go back through the archives, I remember where I was and what I was doing and thinking at the time — at least when it comes to politics. I started Armed Prophet less than a month after I moved here on a permanent basis. In its early days it was fairly scattershot, and it took me awhile to find my voice as a blogger. But find it I did, along with a small but reliable readership.
In those two years I covered a lot of great stories and arguments, including (but not limited to) the arrest of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, Colin Powell's now-infamous U.N. presentation, WMD reports that didn't bear out, Bush's ultimatum to Saddam and announcement of war, the fall of Baghdad, car chases, historic snowstorms, minor hurricanes, a dog rescue bumping national politicians off the cable news, Tractor Man, a Japanese wrestler-politician, the California recall and early word that Arnold would win big, a marathon Senate session, the Democrats' pre-primary winnowing process, Howard Dean's yearbook quote, the hateable Wesley Clark,
the more hateable John Edwards, Kerry's Iowa comeback, a DNC nightclub fundraiser, the Post's incredibly biased Dana Milbank, Slate's contemptible Tim Noah and laughable Will Saletan, the "tyranny" of Instapundit, Dr. Seuss' politics, Drudge's excitability, CBS's Memogate, "Fahrenheit 9/11" as well as other films with political implications obvious and not-so-obvious, GOP and Dem comedy shows, anti-war and anti-freedom libertarians, the occasional blind item and separated-at-birth feature, bizarre orthographic systems, color changes and other adjustments to the layout, crashing computers, publicity from Joe Scarborough, the Tiananmen Square massacre, Ronald Reagan in the Capitol Rotunda, my trip to the Republican National Convention in New York City, what I did with my 2004 ballot, a lengthy, semi-definitive post-election summary, and a brief history of the Internet.
If and when I resume making "arguments, contemplations, musings and ruminations on politics and media from inside the Beltway" in blog format at another location, I'll amend this post and show you the way.