Why do I blog? Part I

by Rocket Finance

If you happen to be one of the two or three (I’m probably exaggerating) people who have been with me from the beginning, you know that the focus of Rocket Finance has changed several times in its nineteen month existence.

My first model was Hustlermoneyblog, but I soon realized that I could not outhustle a hustler. I then started writing about our family finance experiences – more along the lines of the traditional model for personal finance blogging. I enjoyed writing about our money challenges and I think produced at least a couple of memorable posts, but the fact remained that family finance is not my passion. I have some interest in it, I have some interesting stories to tell and a few tips to pass along, but always come back to the same spot.

This is the honest truth: I have been following politics since before I could read.

Our family did not have a television for most of the 1980’s and a good part of the 1990’s, so I used to listen to talk radio before there really was any talk radio. I listened to National Public Radio and a home-spun talk show on a local Christian radio station at the age of five. Not all the radio I listened to was political, Bob and Betty on WBBM-Chicago, Jonathan Green on WTMJ-Milwaukee and a show where a guy read books on NPR were among my favorites. One year I listened to J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit being read a chapter at a time once a week in it’s entirety – all 95,674 words. I also listened to sports talk and radio dramas.

As I said, there was not much political talk on the radio in the early 1980’s – NPR and a few local hosts – and it was just about all liberal. I remember Bob Lassiter on WLS in particular, in fact I called his show to talk about abortion when I was twelve years old. I remember the first time I heard Rush Limbaugh on the radio, it was the first week that he was syndicated nationally. I had just turned fourteen and I listened to him for about fifteen minutes before I went sprinting up the stairs, yelling to my mother that there was a conservative on the radio. I was so excited to finally hear someone who I agreed with on the radio.

Throughout high school, I continued to be fascinated by history and politics even while pursuing other extracurricular activities – music, drama and sports. I once represented a presidential candidate in a mock debate during the 1992 election. As a senior in high school, I would often return home at two or three in the morning. My parents always knew where I had been – debating my liberal friends, Bob and Eric on politics, environment, religion and philosophy. Normal pursuits for an eighteen year old.

My personal life journey is pretty ecclectic: I have an undergraduate degree in mathematics education with a minor in vocal performance – almost. I went on to earn a master’s degree in counseling and now I earn a living in college athletics. Other jobs that I have held include assembling cappuccino machines, lifeguarding, substitute teaching, construction, wood finishing, choir directing and youth pastoring. I was also a college administrator for a time which gave me experience in event planning, debt counseling, fundraising and strategic planning.

The only real constants in my life have been my faith and a burning desire to interact politically with those around me. I have carried on political discussions all over the blogosphere – forums, chat rooms and most recently, Facebook. When I was a roofer, I talked politics with my fellow workers as we tore shingles off and threw them in a dumpster. I talked politics while I worked as a substitute teacher and when I attended weekly Rotary meetings. I always tried not to make people angry and sincerely sought to see things from the other side. I have even changed my mind on more than one idea – at one point in my life, I was pro-choice and my 8th grade science project supposedly proved global warming.

Therefore, as much as I try to restrain myself, it is only natural that Rocket Finance eventually began to take on more and more of a political tone and that will remain the case for the forseeable future, a few stories about my family or my own financial decisions and experiences will make their way into blog posts, but the majority of the content will be commentary on government fiscal policies or highlighting stories that I find important.

By not filtering my political views, I risk losing readers and possibly income (although there is not a great deal of income here to begin with) Several in the personal finance blogosphere have warned me that conservative or free market viewpoints are not welcome in this business . . . and there are some bloggers who keep their political viewpoints to themselves in an effort to preserve their income, readership or just keep the peace. I think some people just don’t like controversy and I respect their decision in that regard. There are some things that I don’t want to talk about either.

Maybe I just lack discipline, but when it comes to politics, I can’t seem to keep my mouth shut.

Going forward, I plan to keep this blog under the general category of personal finance and I hope to stay away from purely political topics, meaning that every post will have relevance to you and your finances.  Furthermore, I will always strive to preserve a tone that is firm and confident, yet gracious to other viewpoints.

  1. 4 Responses to “Why do I blog? Part I”

  2. By Sara on Feb 18, 2009 | Reply

    Finally! A conservative! I, for one, am looking forward to your more political posts. So, I’ll be a loyal follower (sort of).

  3. By Lance on Feb 18, 2009 | Reply

    Um… I’ve seen your posts elsewhere on different blogs rocket c. You do more with your horrible arguing skills and name calling for the party and the movement. Knock off name calling and liberal bashing and start substituting good ideas, proper spelling, and fiscal conservatism with less federal government and more local and state government like we are supposed to. Your constant talk of ::Obama-name-name-name-something:: makes you look like an absolute moron.

  4. By rocketc on Feb 18, 2009 | Reply

    I’m not sure where you are reading Obama-bashing . . . I am certainly in favor of more local and state control and less federal control . . . and I apologize if I have ever called you a moron.

    As for spelling, I am spelling disadvantaged and I am waiting for a government bailout.

  5. By Grant on Feb 21, 2009 | Reply

    Cool! The great part about your blog is that you can make it what ever you want. The key to attracting readers, and hence making some money is that you have to write about something that stokes your passion.

    If politics is it, so be it!

    I haven’t been following rocket finance for long, but I’ll keep checking in.

    Let the political posts fly! I’m eager to participate.

    -Grant
    TheCornerOfficeBlog.com

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