Just the FAQ, Jack!

Our ever-evolving, constantly changing, not always staying exactly the same usually but depends on our mood and how late we stayed up the night before and dang why'd I drink that extra glass of wine before bedtime Frequently Asked Questions:

  • What is this, waddayacallit, '43rd Rate Dues' website bloggy thingy anyway? Why, thank you for asking -- that's a terrific question. Absolutely smashing, actually! Do you do this "question asking" thing for a living, because you're talent for it is fantastic. Really!

    First, the title of our virtual home-away-from-home -- 43rd State Blues: Democracy for Idaho. Idaho being, of course, the Foity Thoid state to enter the Union in 1890, after Washington State. [ED. NOTE: There was a funny line here but our intrepid blogger Ian Stenseng noted that I had actually mixed up the WA and OR state nicknames so the joke went down in flames, killing a small group of traveling actors performing "Pretty Woman" on the dinner-theater circuit and knocking out the power in 6 Western states. Oh, the humanity...]

    The "Democracy for Idaho" part comes from our affiliation with the organization Democracy for America, started by former presidential candidate and former Governor of Vermont Howard Dean, former chairman of the Democratic National Committee and still a colossus astride the world. Long ago in the distant past when dinosaurs other than Dick "Dick" Cheney walked the earth, this blog started as Southeast Idaho for Dean. It shortly thereafter morphed into Idaho for Dean, later becoming the pugnacious pixels of pulchritude you're perusing right now, 43rd State Blues (known in brevity as 43SB).

    For those of you out-of-staters who think Idaho is located somewhere between Narnia and Minas Tirith, covered solid with potatoes and pointy mountains while populated solely by neo-Nazis and far-far-right Republicans, you couldn't be more wrong. Here's a link to a Yahoo! map of Idaho, and here's a link to Wikipedia's entry on our wacky yet wonderful state.

    So... you, dear Democrat and/or progressive, have found yourself here at 43SB. What, you may be asking yourself, is the purpose of this loquacious little blog. Good question! Let us hie to an explanation:

    Let's assume you are the aformentioned Demo-progressive, and you're sick to tears of the spin, pretzel-logic and outright lies that ultra-rightwing Republicans in Idaho bloviate out with the regularity of an over-fed goose on laxatives.

    You've begun to (or wish to) get more involved in the political process here in our fair state, and you find yourself looking for kindred spirits with whom you can open a dialogue, exchange ideas, or maybe you just feel the need to rant like a mofo (our speciality!). Writing a letter to the editor of your local newspaper is satisfying, but you only get printed once a month and they edit out all your best snark. You find yourself on the Internet on a regular basis, but don't really want to take the time, trouble and expense to start your own blog. What's a busy but opinionated Idaho liberal to do?

    Ahh, yessss.... 43SB. Muhwah-ha-ha-haaa!

    See, here at 43rd State Blues, all you have to do is sign up as a member (Gratis! Nada denaro! FREE!) and within a couple days you'll be given a Power User account, allowing you to, in essence, create your own personal blog. Decide what your user name will be -- your nom de 'net, so to speak -- come up with a topic you want to write about, pound the livin' politics outta your keyboard, click a few buttons and BOOM! You, my friend, are now the proud parent of a bouncin' baby opinion! Yes, it chops! It slices! It juliennes!

    "Say," you say, "why don't I just scuttle off to blogger or livejournal or typepad and create my own blog-whahoosits instead of posting here?" Another good question! (My, you're just full-to-bursting with clever interrogatives today, aren't you?) You're certainly welcome to create your own weblog -- heck, we encourage all smart, talented and, like you, good-looking lefties to do just that. However, we know how busy you are -- work, family, travel, that Slim Whitman album collection you've been working on for lo these many years -- and a blog, like a new puppy or one of those "Tamagotchi" electronic critters, demands constant attention. Stop updating it on a regular basis (like daily, or at least a few times each week) and it withers and dies, and nobody needs that kind of crappy karma weighing them down, right?

    With a team blog like 43SB, if you're away for a few days, or Charlie phones and needs you to take the Angels to Tahiti for a couple weeks of R&R, or you just don't feel like staring a computer in the chops... then don't. No need for the kind of soul-withering guilt that accompanies not posting your trenchant analysis, or forgetting to floss, or coughing next to an insurance salesman. Not up to posting for a while? No Problemo! There's usually somebody ready to jump in, grab an oar, and row our mighty ship of truth and justice onward -- at least until you catch your breath and are ready once again to enter the fray. See? No sweat. Easier than shooting ducks in a duffle bag.

    So whaddaya waiting for? Sign in, loosen up your fingers, fire up those neural synapses, and start shellacking those far-right Republican wingnuts today! Operators are standing by!

    Click for mundane FAQ's like changing your timezone...

    • Q: Is your server's clock wrong? I'm seeing weird timestamps on posts here.

      I've just checked - the server's on zulu (GMT) time and then the blogging software adjusts itself GMT-7 (Mountain). Mine was due to a screwed-up account setting pointing me to US Central (GMT-6) -- I was seeing datestamps an hour ahead until I fixed it here.

      To adjust your timezone, go to My Account | Edit and scroll down; you'll see an option controlling what time zone you're supposedly in. Most of Idaho is GMT-7 (Mountain), but many purty parts of Idaho are GMT-8 (Pacific). All you expats and furriners are on your own. Change to meet your preference, then Be sure to hit the Submit button to save your change. --d2