So, Palin or not, here they come: the national posts you, faithful readers, wanted to talk about the most in 2008.
10Palin Reveals Psychic Powers [9/13]: I take it back: if Gov. Palin really could read Barack Obama's mind, she would have known he knew exactly what he was doing every step of the way.
8tieMcCain Acts with Honor, Defends Obama Against Racists and Fearmongers [10/12]: Even John McCain had enough decency left to publicly reject the lies some of his supporters spewed.
8tieObama Caves to Bush; Clinton Stands for 4th Amendment [7/9]: Don't say the Madville Times was an unmitigated love fest for Obama. He torqued off many of us freedom-loving bloggers by siding with President Bush on FISA and the continued violation of the Fourth Amendment.
6tieSarah Palin, Omniscient [10/1]: What papers do you read, Governor Palin? "All of them." Unbelievable.
6tieFrance Not Perfect, But Universal Health Coverage Still Great! [7/14]: We'd have heard a lot more about universal health care if my man Dennis Kucinich had been the nominee. But sit tight: Secretary Daschle may move us toward the kind of health care that France, Canada, and most of the rest of the industrialized world have realized produces better health outcomes for less money than our broken system.
5The Selfishness of Joe Wurzelbacher: The Plumber Is Plumb Wrong [10/16]: My first post on Joe the Plumber dectupled my daily hits, as everyone spent the 24 hours after the last Presidential debate playing Google-P.I. trying to find out who Joe the Plumber really was. Shady as he seemed, no one ever produced evidence that Wurzelbacher was a McCain plant (or an in-law of Charles Keating). This post addressed what really mattered: that Samuel Joseph Wurzelbacher symbolized a thoughtless selfishness that could hardly be called patriotic.
3tiePalin Installs Tanning Bed in Governor's Mansion [9/16]: Why did the silliest posts spark so much conversation?
3tiePalin Comparison: McCain Takes Youth and Inexperience off the Table [8/29]: I put this analysis up the day McCain announced his VP choice. No rumors, no distortion, just the facts about Palin's basic qualifications and how they erased one of the best arguments McCain could have made against Obama: experience.
2Palin Misquotes Albright, Condemns Self [10/7]: Short post, long and vigorous disputes in the comments section.
1Obama Respects Second Amendment; NRA Keeps Lying [9/24]: The 2008 champ! 43 comments! The conversation wasn't always pretty, but I can take it... especially if it exposes the paucity of true civic spirit behind some political movements.
Obviously, the Presidential election dominated the most-commented stories. I find it interesting (and a little disappointing) that more conversation didn't spring up around some of the other big national stories of the year, like the mortgage meltdown, the stimulus checks, and the big bank bailouts. With the election over, we'll see if the 2009 conversation turns more toward those heady economic topics.
But you never know what the new year will bring. Whatever happens in 2009, if it affects Lake Herman and South Dakota, I'm eager to blog about it. I hope you'll keep reading and commenting... and tell your friends to do the same!
Thanks for an exciting and intellectually challenging 2008. Here's to nothing but good news and good conversation in 2009!