In the run up to the 2020 US Presidential Election, I got hooked on a group of anti Trump republicans who call themselves The Bulwark. Being a fairly active doom scroller on Twitter, I had been clicking on many of their links, and find myself nodding my head. As a center left Dem, in the distant past, I had some opinions that I shared with moderate Republicans, and at times I had even pulled the lever for Republican candidates.
In October, they opened their Kimonos and let us mere interlopers access their paid content.
And I was hooked. Not that I always agree with them, but there is a lot more common ground than I thought. I pulled the trigger, and paid for all access.
First, I need to point out that even if you don’t pay for the extra goodies, what they publish for all is outstanding. You get access to the Daily Podcast, and a slate of stories published by their staff, as well as some great third parties (I am particularly impressed with Brian Karem’s pieces).
I was skeptical because I remember Charlie Sykes for his talk radio show that was not as awful as Rush Limbaugh, but it was pretty harsh. Early in the Trump administration, I started seeing his byline on oped pieces in the NY Times, and like when I read a Hugh Hewitt column on the WaPo, I read Charlie to get a glimpse into his warped mind. But instead of confirming my earlier impressions of Charlie, I found a rational, well thought out analysis, and taking the Trump Administration to task. Whoa.
And that resonated deeply. So, hearing he was one of the principals of The Bulwark, I began reading, and nodding my head more than I was shaking my head.
Then, when the free access to the paywalled shut, I grabbed my wallet so fast that my debit card had whiplash as I signed up.
And now, I listen to The Daily Podcast, The Next Level, and The Secret Podcast. JVL is scarily in tune with my views. Tim Miller is a great “squish” (as he describes himself). Mona Charon is an old school fiscal conservative who I sometimes agree with, and sometimes not (she is delusional about the chances for fiscal restraint. Clearly not enough of the population agree with her to actually affect policy).
If you are a casual reader, wondering if it is worth dropping your money on the sub, I will say go for it.
Photo: Medieval walled city of Carcassone, France