I try very hard to keep the focus of this site on the issues at hand, but every once in a while I take the privilege of the forum for some personal liberties.

August 25, 2008 marks the 4th anniversary of what is now YallPolitics. With over 10,000 posts and just a shade under 39,000 comments, I think it is now safe to say that YallPolitics has become the largest political blog in terms of traffic and content in Mississippi. Although there were a few posts on our first iteration of the site that are not still catalogued, this is the first post I could find dealing with the mayor’s race in Jackson. It’s certainly not a very auspicious start from a content perspective, but everyone’s got to start somewhere.

There are a few people that I always like to recognize. My outside web guys, Greg Griffith and JD Graffam are both about as talented as they come in their respective technology disciplines, and they played a huge role in helping to shape this very functional platform. If you have site/blog design needs, they are really good and work well together. I have a bunch of folks behind the scenes that help keep things straight . . . from our interns who post daily to people who are plugged in that send information that we get out there. You know who you are. Thank you.

I also want to thank my wife Holly for putting up with my blogging-related foolishness. We get set this week to celebrate our anniversary as well (much more important than by blogiversary). Holly certainly helps keep me on track and is patient with my “I have to get this post out right now” frenzies, and is also the one to tell me to chill out when I get a little too close to the political blogging edge.

But most importantly, thank you. To all the folks who say nice things about the site when I see them . . . to the regular commenters . . . to the people who just stop by and lurk once a day or once a week, this is your site. I hope you will continue to keep YallPolitics and YallSports (shameless plug) on your RSS readers and favorites list.

People always have two things to say to me about the site. The first is “Gosh, you must spend all your time on the site”. I don’t. I have lots of good reliable help and you can get a lot done in a little time. Second, people ask, “Why do you do it?”. Obviously, it’s not for the money. The answer to that question is that the site has such a positive impact. Together, we have moved the ball forward on so many issues. Obviously, we were in the right place at the right time with the right platform when the Scruggs Scandal hit. We have helped connect some dots that those in the political realm didn’t want connected. We have exposed some knuckleheads, and have every intention of doing more of that in the future. I think the press in this state is more cognizant of how they cover issues because of our site and others like it, and I know we are a source of content and research for the press. Those in the political realm are more measured in their actions knowing that folks are always watching and they are just a few clicks away from exposing what they see to a large and engaged audience.

I candidly had no realistic expectation when we started that the site would be where it is today, but it has certainly taken on a life of its own. I hope you will stay engaged with YallPolitics, and I look forward to better things to come.

Thanks again.