Happy 4th Birthday, TestPattern.org!

Today mark's the fourth anniversary of the site, so I'd like to send a present to one of my loyal readers. For a chance at winning a TestPattern.org mug, just send an email to feedback@testpattern.org, along with your name and how you found the site. I'll pick one (or two) winners out of the first ten entries I receive.

I started this site four years ago with a simple idea: to speak out. The United States had been attacked by terrorists 15 months earlier, and it had become increasingly clear to me that President Bush did not respect the rule of law, or democracy as we know it, and would use the events of 9-11 as an excuse to run roughshod over our government; bending Congress, the media and the American people to submit to his agenda of war, tax cuts for the rich, deregulation, privatization, etc.

What I could not anticipate four years ago was how far Bush would go, or how much the Democratic Party and American voters would let him get away with.

Despite an agenda that included lying about tax cuts for the rich, lying to invade Iraq, lying about environmental policy and global warming, lying about detention and torture and the suspension of habeas corpus, lying about propaganda, lying about the air quality of New York City after 9-11 ... lying about goddamned everything, Bush-Cheney were elected to a second term.

Despite the fact that Bush's war has cost us hundreds of billions of dollars and thousands of lives, despite the fact that his administration ignored the suffering in New Orleans after Katrina just a year after making heroic efforts in Florida when multiple hurricanes hit there, despite the fact that Bush illegally eavesdropped on American citizens ... the list of crimes is as long as the number of days that have passed since Bush took office. Despite all this and much more, many Americans were unaware, or uninterested.

As someone with a critical eye for the news, and the ability to publish a website, however modest, I felt it was my right and responsibility to speak out. I invited my friends to contribute, and they did.

And gradually, although not quickly enough for my taste, things have changed. Millions of people like us have stood up, spoken their minds, emailed their friends, wrote their local newspapers, called radio shows, investigated wrongdoing, created blogs and got the truth out.

I tip my hat to you for reading and for staying involved. May the truth prevail.