It’s been just over one year since I started ‘A Good Treaty.’ In the last twelve months, plenty has changed for me personally: my wife and I welcomed our first child into the world, I finished working in Washington, DC, and my whole family and I moved to Middletown, Connecticut. Very recently, I added my name to the blog, having decided that AGT was old and matured enough to deserve an accountable author.
This blog started out as a sounding-board for my gripes and untapped energies, but it’s become something far more for me: an outlet for my ever expanding fascination with Russian politics and culture.
AGT began firmly in the anti-liberal camp of Russian ideological squabbling, but I’ve tried harder over time to avoid commentary and analysis that is simple enough to appeal to the debate between pro-Putin and anti-Putin fanatics. My boredom with this rhetorical moral war is nothing new, but my conscious efforts to disengage have gradually gained steam.
On August 15, 2010, I was honored by the infamous bloggers at La Russophobe with a post titled “An Idiotic, Lying Jackass is blogging at ‘A Good Treaty.’” Maybe this was the moment that I first seriously questioned the direction of AGT. Was attracting people like La Russophobe the reason I started blogging?
No. It wasn’t.
And so I’ve shifted my focus. I rarely write about US-Russian relations these days, and I’ve intentionally tried to avoid redundant attacks on Russian liberals. This isn’t because I don’t frequently itch to bitch and moan about sanctimonious or self-obsessed political actors — it’s because I find it too easy, and too hot tempered. The result is too often polemical boilerplate that might sustain a healthy army of Internet trolls, but doesn’t amount to very good analysis, and usually covers familiar terrain.
So this post is to thank the readers who have stuck with this blog over the past 12 months. ‘A Good Treaty’ was something I entered into lightly, but researching and writing it has become one of my greatest pleasures and continues to stimulate me intellectually in ways I’d never expected. None of this would be possible or even remotely sustainable without the much appreciated feedback and visits from the people who read ‘A Good Treaty.’
So to those of you out there reading this: thanks!
With warm wishes,
P.S. For anybody who’s interested, here are the traffic statistics for AGT over the last year:
August 11, 2010 to February 9, 2011 (agoodtreaty.com)
February 1, 2010 to February 9, 2011 (agoodtreaty.wordpress.com)