Taos Friction is a collaborative effort by Johnny I. Gallegos and Wes Edling, the limehosting.com webmasters and the former publisher and editor of Horse Fly, Bill Whaley. Whaley has been writing about Taos politics and cultural matters for ten years. Gallegos and Edling have long been committed to the wonders of Internet technology as a way of enlightening Taosenos, and creating opportunities for economic development. Further, Taos Friction is a site meant to entertain the cognoscenti of Taos, those who have some understanding of the cultural mores and a sense of humor—not itinerant or anonymous bloggers.

If you wish to submit a comment, you must have some method behind your madness. Email to bwhaley@newmex.com. The site is a work in progress and will evolve, according to its own logic. We invite politicos and their darlings to participate.

The Art of Politics in Taos is a many faceted, often Byzantine or complex practice, full of deviousness, scheming, and humor. Shockingly and occasionally, local politicos take actions that favor the public good. But the process is way more interesting than the product. As the current doyenne of art and politics in Taos has said, “If you don’t participate in northern New Mexico politics, you miss out on half the fun.” It is also exhausting.

As for cultural matters, we shall also post comments about art and literature, music and theatre, the press and technology or whatever else falls under this rubric. The current state of the Great Recession, really an historical condition in Taos, requires some ingenuity regarding economic and spiritual survival. We think the answer to survival can be found in the historic claims of the celebrated landscape and the patterns of the past. Given local beliefs in concepts like karma or the symbol of the Sacred Mountain, the Town’s current promotional blitz called “Return to Sacred Places” might have some validity—a kernel of truth–despite the obvious pandering. Everything is on the table.

Due to all the fun and frustration, Taos Friction will walk a thin line between the civil and the absurd, the plain facts and their hyperbolic interpretation. Retaliation is a fact of life. Taosenos have increasingly turned to the legal system to punish their enemies. Consequently, we must turn to the classic forms of parody and satire, as well as the use of metaphor and irony as defense.

We want to revive the essay or letter as the form best suited to Taos Friction. Whether one sentence, one paragraph, or one document, a submission, should have a beginning, middle, and end. We hope and pray our correspondents and readers—the cognoscenti– possess some evidence of experience or knowledge or have access to the use of their imaginative faculties. Our project here can best be understood as a manifestation of those who think and feel his or her heart beat due to a passion for the subject. We are not like the itinerant professionals, who write for the press or declaim on radio, but we are, we hope, informed amateurs, who love this place and people while  finding Taos a subject worthy of discussion.