The Things I Miss by Not Checking Email – Or Keeping Up on Me Blog Reading

NP welcomes a glorious new niece. Shall we all join her in turning into enormous piles of sappy mush?

What the fuck is it about babies that does this even to those of us who don’t even like the little buggers? Resistance… fading… must… reach… catidote…

Ahhh. Better. Wouldn’t do to damage me tough, Smack-o-Matic swinging reputation by ga-gaaing too much over a baby, but cats is allowed for us merciless political bloggers.

That said… that is a damned cute kid, innit?

Salud, Ashlie Elizabeth! Feliz cumpleaños!

Break Out the Bubbly

Sometimes, good people really do get the recognition they deserve.

First up, one of my favorite bloggers of all time, Steve Benen of The Carpetbagger Report, got snapped up by the Washington Monthly:

Now that my friend Kevin Drum has made the announcement, I can pass along the big news.

Starting this Friday, Aug. 22, Kevin will be leaving the Washington Monthly, heading over to a new blog at Mother Jones. He’ll be replaced at Political Animal by … me.

Yes, five-and-a-half years and more than 16,000 posts later, I’m giving up The Carpetbagger Report to blog exclusively for the Washington Monthly. I couldn’t be more excited about the opportunity.

For years, I had this idea in mind — start a site, work hard, build an audience, and wait for some wonderful news outlet to come along and hire me. Given this, and my love for the Washington Monthly (which I’ve been reading assiduously since I was an undergrad), I’m genuinely thrilled. Joining me at Political Animal will be Hilzoy of Obsidian Wings, who, as one of my very favorite bloggers, only makes the news even better.

For Carpetbagger readers, the only thing that’s going to change is the url and the layout. I’m going to keep doing exactly what I’m doing now; just update your bookmarks and follow me to my new home.

My first day at the Monthly is this Friday, Aug. 22. The schedule will remain the same until then, but starting Friday morning, I’ll be posting full-time at Political Animal. Hope to see you there.

As you all know, without Steve, there wouldn’t be a Happy Hour Discurso. You can bet your fucking bippy I’ll be there!

(Question: does anyone here know what, exactly, a bippy is?)

Steve’s one of the hardest-working bloggers in the known universe. He’s also one of the funniest, kindest, and competent. He’s earned this, and I’m absolutely thrilled for him.

Kevin Drum had just better keep up the Friday Catblogging tradition over at Mother Jones, or I’m going to have to buy Steve two cats and a camera to compensate.

Steve’s not the only deserving person who got a better gig. MSNBC did the right thing and gave Rachel Maddow a show. I don’t watch television anymore – I barely manage to catch me some Daily Show and Colbert Report from time to time – but I might have to make an exception:

I’m very rarely encouraged by any of the decisions made by major news outlets. Yesterday afternoon, however, was a spectacular exception.

Rachel Maddow has been sounding off about politics on MSNBC so often she might as well have her own show.

And now she does.

The liberal commentator and Air America radio host, who has become a breakout star for the cable channel during the presidential campaign, is taking over the 9 p.m. slot following Keith Olbermann, whom she often subs for on “Countdown.” Olbermann broke what he called a “fully authorized leak” yesterday on the left-wing Web site Daily Kos. Dan Abrams, the former MSNBC general manager who had been hosting “Verdict” at that hour, will continue as NBC’s chief legal correspondent, become a “Dateline” contributor and serve as a daytime anchor for MSNBC.

A recent profile of Rachel in the Nation noted, “Maddow didn’t get here by bluster and bravado but with a combination of crisp thinking and galumphing good cheer. Remarkably, this season’s discovery isn’t a glossy matinee idol or a smooth-talking partisan hack but a PhD Rhodes scholar lesbian policy wonk who started as a prison AIDS activist.”

I’d just add that Rachel is, without doubt or hesitation, the best political observer on television, and her insightful analysis of the 2008 cycle has set a very high bar for the rest of the media to follow. The question hasn’t been whether Rachel would get her own prime-time show; the question has been why Rachel didn’t already have her own prime-time show.

That would be because the media moguls are fucking morons. It’s good to see them wising up a bit.

So, my darlings, raise your glasses high to two of the best people in political reporting. Salud!

Wow. Just…. Wow.

Sitemeter led me to a new delight tonight: PTET.

Leads DaveScot around by the nose.

Unleashes the Smack-o-Matic until Denyse O’Leary blubbers.

Has the same soft spot for Buddhism I do (once the religious crap’s stripped away and the philosophy’s left to shine).

I likes this blog!

Oh, and, you know, there was that really nice compliment that melted me into a soppy little puddle:

While I’m in a blog-rolling mood, props to En Tequila Es Verdad for being without question the best blog in the world today…

Wow. I mean… really… wow. That’s overwhelming, is what that is. Gracias.

But you know what? This blog wouldn’t be anything without my readers. I scribble it, but you, my darlings, are the ones who inspire it. So that compliment, there: that belongs to you.

Salud, mi amigos.

Expelled Takes Canada by Storm

If you haven’t seen the weekend box office for Expelled’s Canadian debut, swallow whatever you’re drinking, make sure you’re securely seated, and if you haven’t been doing your crunches, apply proper abdominal support. Then click on through to Pharyngula.

Isn’t that gorgeous?

Canadians drink free in the cantina tonight.

So That’s What that Was

There I was at work all day, getting me arse kicked by unrelenting call volume, totally oblivious to what was happening over at Pharyngula. And here I was wondering why the sudden influx of new and delightful commenters. Got me answer when I pulled up Sitemeter this evening and went, “Oh, now, THAT traffic’s not normal…”

Wish I could return the favor, but let’s be honest: the majority of my regulars are already Pharyngula readers, so humble thanks will have to do. Muchas gracias, PZ! The cantina owes you at least a few drinks next time you’re in the neighborhood.

It’s good to see you all here. And for any of you who weren’t here for the Carnival of the Elitist Bastards, please go enjoy – it’s got a lot more intellectual substance than my ravings.

One Hundred

That’s right, my darlings. The 100th post. A landmark day.

Pop a cork and celebrate with me. I couldn’t have done it without you.

You know what else I’d like to see reach 100? The Skeptologists! Which means it needs to be picked up by a network. So drop on by, if you haven’t already, and send a note of support. I think the Skeptologists would go nicely with some Mythbusters, don’t you?

Kick back, raise your glass, and have a little skeptical TV.

Here’s to you, here’s to quality programming, and here’s to life.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled ranting, already in progress.

A Landmark Day at the Watering Hole

My darlings, break out the bubbly! Dana’s been given the nod by another blog! Here’s George at Decepit Old Fool, explaining why he didn’t write a long post about Rep. Monique Davis:

But why should I bother? En Tequila Es Veridad answers representative Davis just about right. If there was ever an appropriate use of profanity…

George, love, this Cava’s for you!

Drink up, me hearties, and then troop over and show George some love. Then we’re en masse to Cobalt’s place for an after-hours McCain bashing session.

So, let’s sum up: En Tequila Es Verdad has earned PSA’s seal of approval; been saluted by Cobalt; attracted learned commentary by Nicole, Kaden, Sassy, Cobalt and PSA; and is now linked by Decrepit Old Fool.

You know what? That’s not bad for a baby blog that’s still shitting its diapers and bawling at people all night.

Mucho amor grande to you, my darlings! Salud!