Many thanks to Justin Hinchcliffe, a Tory blogger I only occasionally agree with, but a blogger always worth reading because he has the almost unique position of being a Tory who is prepared to be critical of his own party, who has written an interesting piece in support of this blog, for which I thank him.
It seems that I am more popular with non Liberal Democrats than I am with Lib Dems, if nominations to the Lib Dem blogging awards are to be believed. According to the piece on Vox Politics on 18 Doughty Street last night, this blog came only 12th in the vote.
I guess I will have to wait and see whether I score higher in Iain Dale's own list, voted for by hundreds of bloggers of all party political affiliations and none.
In many ways, scoring higher in the other list (Iain Dale's) might be more of a success, although being liked and appreciated by your own colleagues is always appreciated, because I set this blog up to be something more than a Liberal Democrat mouthpiece. I wanted to praise politicians of any political colour when they do the right thing, I want to be critical of my own party when I feel they are heading in the wrong direction and I also hoped that people who are not Lib Dem would read my blog. In effect, I did not want to preach to the converted. Instead I wanted to be an active part of the conversion. If some Tories have read my blog and thought that there are some Lib Dems who are not obsessed with the "love in" over Europe, if there are some Labour voters who have read what I have written and agree that ID cards are bad and their own party is wrong on that issue, then I have succeeded in a way that makes any placing on a list of nominees for best blog seem very unimportant.
Of course, that's not to say I am not disappointed not to have made the shortlist, of course I am. But if doing so means that I need to be less critical less independent, then I'll happily miss out.
I ahve to say that some of the shortlisted five for best blog are are absolutely top class blogs that any party would be proud of and I wish all the shortlisted nominees a warm congratulations for their efforts and their success, which is hard earned and fully justified.