Suppose it’s time to abandon that editorial “we” for a second, introduce myself and mention a few developments blogwise.
Anyway, with Pat Cleary’s departure for new professional challenges — good luck, Pat! — I’ve been picking up the bulk of the blogging at Shopfloor.org. I’m the chief speechwriter around here, which means writing a variety of materials representing NAM President John Engler and the association.
Background: Grew up in Oregon, studied history at Reed College, worked in D.C. in the ’80s, earned a grad degree in journalism (Columbia), wrote and edited at newspapers Oregon in Albany and Corvallis, Ore., and Bismarck and Grand Forks, N.D. Hacked around politics and government in North Dakota (for the state Senate, Gov. Ed Schafer and Gov. John Hoeven), moved out to D.C. to be a speechwriter for HHS Secretary Tommy Thompson, flacked at a federal financial regulatory agency for three years, worked as a D.C. lobbyist for a midwestern governor for a year before coming to the NAM about 15 months ago. So, a generalist, although certainly appreciative of manufacturing, as my father was a vice president in the industrial and agricultural pump business.
The philosophy of the blog remains the same: Promote manufacturing and the free market, try to have a little fun, provoke discussion and pop a few bubbles of anti-business sanctimony. When possible, ask why Al Gore is having Snoop Dogg perform at the Live Earth concerts (although that topic’s only good for another month or so). Popular music remains a topic, although Pat was more interested in Springsteen, and me, I’m a Nick Cave guy. (And Garland Jeffreys. Hi, Garland!)
Fortunately, the NAM boasts many talented writers and thinkers, so we’ll be adding voices as the months proceed. You will have already seen a post or two by Hank Cox, vice president for communications and our resident historian and bluegrass player. Hank does the weekly “The Way Things Were” segment on “America’s Business with Mike Hambrick.”
Also on board is Doug Kurkul, vice president of member communications and marketing services, a man with great NAM institutional memory and knowledge. So we’re rounding out the points of view.
We’re also looking at ways to make the blog more…bloggy, so look for some design developments, etc., in the near future.
So that’s it. Thanks, and now back to the editorial “we.”
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