Monday, November 27, 2006

A Thank You & A Goodbye

by Kyle Michaelis
(Author's Note - 11/29/06: By popular demand and my weakness for ego-stroking, the New Nebraska Network remains open for business. The below may thus seem silly and over-dramatic, but - I assure you - it was written with great conviction and total honesty in the moment.)

With a heavy heart but a telling sense of relief, I am taking leave from the New Nebraska Network, perhaps permanently. Although I recognize the need for a site such as this, I'm no longer willing to make the personal sacrifices that sustained it these last 20 months.

I'll be writing no new posts for at least the next several weeks. And, beyond that, I make no assurances but that this site will never again be what it has been - in terms of both production and personal investment.

Of course, I feel like I'm letting down many of the wonderful readers who've found this site somewhere along the way. To all those who have contributed their own voice to the New Nebraska Network and who have shown me such kindness and respect, you will always have my deepest gratitude for making this experience rewarding and (hopefully) worthwhile.

I am proud of the work we've done at the New Nebraska Network. That's a large part of why I feel compelled to give it up. When it gets right down to it, I have expectations of commitment and quality that I'm no longer able to meet at this site. If I'm going to do something, I want to do it right. Readers deserve no less. I don't want to waste your time or my own with a half-hearted effort insufficient to fulfill the goals and the vision to which I've always adhered.

There is such a need for independent and progressive voices in Nebraska. Whether writing letters to the editor, making phone calls to your state or Congressional representatives, or even starting a blog like this, my greatest hope for this site is that it might have inspired (and yet inspire) others to speak out with courage and conviction. But, having opinions isn't enough. Those of us who respect the power of ideas and trust in democracy must recognize our responsibility to persuade others if we truly believe in change.

It's easy to know you're right. It's easy to speak "the truth" if you're willing to accept the consequences. But, persuasion is an art - one that requires enough confidence in yourself to actually respect those who disagree or share different principles.

The truth is our guide. But, in places like Nebraska, persuasion must be our work. I promise to continue working to win the hearts and minds of the people of Nebraska to new possibilities and a progressive vision for this state we love. For some, this struggle is a political one, but that isn't its essence. Elections, registration numbers, and roll calls are just manifestations of forces far greater than partisan concerns. As I seek new avenues for my passions and skills, I look forward to new voices stepping-in where this site leaves off.

Again, I don't know what - if anything - the future holds for the New Nebraska Network. I'm open to suggestions if anyone has any bright ideas. I just know that, right now, I have other priorities that must take precedent and other interests I must pursue.

Thank you for reading. More importantly, thank you for believing.

Wishing peace and love,

Kyle L. Michaelis


Blogger john owens-ream said...

I just sent you an email on the nyd listserve, but I wanted to post here as well.

I've enjoyed the NNN as long as I've had a blogfeed, so I'm very sad to see you go.

I guess the UNODems and the NDP blog will have to try to pick up the slack.
Hopefully Ryan & Eric and everyone else are up to the task, you leave big shoes to fill in the blogging world.

OK- I've used the words blog, feed,and blogosphere way too many times in the last 500 words I've typed.

Anonymous Adam Morfeld said...

A sad day...

Your blog gave me hope on the tedious summer days of canvassing and phone banking leading up to the campaign ... thanks Kyle!

Anonymous JFinNE said...

Well Kyle, this will be a happy day for Bulldog. In light of that, might I suggest you invite guest bloggers to post? Your standards are high and your readers and guest posters would know what to strive for per your example. Please think about it as we would miss our NNN daily fix.

Anonymous Grateful said...

Kyle, I found your site late in the campaign, and being a Republican, I want to say thank you. Your openmindedness and your quest for truthful information helped me stay balanced in my thinking. I'm sorry to see you go. Thank you and best wishes.

Blogger Kyle Michaelis said...


I've put out an open call for others to join me in the past and was always met with a disappointing and disheartening lack of response. Of course, if others wanted to pick up my slack, I'd be happy to take them aboard. I just know I can't devote as much of myself to this site as I have in recent months.

But, I'd gladly turn over the keys (or, at least, make a couple of spares) if there's the interest out there.

Anonymous JamesL. said...

Very sorry to see you go.

-James L,
Swing State Project

Anonymous Ryan Anderson said...

I am really, really sorry to see you go, Kyle. I try and keep up on politics around the country, and it gave me great pride that one of the finest bloggers out there was representing my party in my own state. It is a damn shame to see you go.

You know, I found your blog shortly after I made plans to start my own progressive blog on Nebraska politics. After I found yours, I decided to abandon my plans, as I had no expectations to equal your eloquent commentary. Perhaps now that there's some void to be filled I will try my hand at it. I'll take some time to think about it.

Anonymous Jon Rehm said...

Sorry to see NNN go. NNN was very good. I appreciated your thoughtful but hard-hitting approach. The late Ross Tegeler would likely dub you a scholar. I hope you carry over your on-line activism into the off-line world. I plan on trying to stay active through the Lancaster County Democrats and through my professional association's legislative committee. I hope everyone in on this list finds their niche in local politics. On to victory.

Jon Rehm

Blogger Dave said...

Have to give a thanks to you as well, Kyle, and I hope to pick up a little more with my own contributions to Nebraska's little corner of the blogosphere, including UNO, rather than simply commenting at your and the NDP blog with my own particular brand of dissent. I've tried my hand at blogging several times, and I've never been able to keep it up for very long.

Though we didn't always see eye to eye, the NNN was one of the first places I looked for a take on anything political in Nebraska. But life comes first, and so while I'm sad to see you go, I certainly understand. If you do get the itch to voice your opinion, you still have the soapbox to shout it from.

Blogger ScottsBluff said...

I just found you at election time. You impressed me with your courage to bring forth a new day in a very behind the world Nebraska; and, your writing. I hope that wherever you are going it is to continue your writing - politics or no. You are a great writer.
I have posted on your blog both as anonymous and as the blogger of a new site:
Sorry to see you go, I think you might be able to do something here with marketing, advertising and people.

Blogger Charlie said...

I'm sorry to see you go. Good luck.

Anonymous Mr. T said...

Please keep it up! Don't let law school finals fade you.


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