Naming a blog is like naming a band. What would have happened if REM had called themselves Stink Dog? Would Wonkette draw 50k readers if it was called "Ana's Place"?
I pondered this question for some minutes. Rejected: Bush is a Rat Bastard (time limited); Prophet Jeff (show, don't tell); Eschaton (oh, come on). After a half cup of coffee, I arrived at Low on the Hog. Yes, it is subtle and nuanced, intellectually and poetically satisfying, but that's not why I chose it.
The phrase first came into rotation in my vocabulary in 1992, in or around New Delhi, India. I was traveling throughout Asia with friends, and we were trying to stretch our dollar. Rather than describe our mode of travel as "cheap" or "dangerous," we chose the elegance of "low on the hog." It was not a mode particularly distinct from our way of living back home either, as it happened.
Class, that ugly unspoken concept Americans have forever tried to transcend--or, for the ultra-inherited rich, ignore. Thanks to the last 25 years, the GOP have managed to transfer most of the nation's new wealth to the already-wealthy, leaving the rest of us to tread water or lose ground. Where under the great Democratic governments of mid-century we actually did pretty good at compressing class differences, under the GOP since Reagan, we've managed to create a nice little two-tier system old France would have been proud of.
For the top few percent of Americans, the last twenty-five years have been sweet indeed. They have been living, for that generation, high on the hog. The rest of us? Ah ... not so much. And that's why I resolved, after lo those 12 minutes, to call the site Low on the Hog.
(And for those of you who revel in nuance and complexity, there's trough enough to root around in for you. The trough for example, at which the wealthy feed. There's pork in the name, and pork in politics. Hogs wallow in mire, and we here at Hog HQ do a fair amount of wallowing ourselves. And finally, a blog called hog is ever so nice. More entendres? Do tell.)
Hope you enjoy it.