Awards and Warm Fuzzies
My Music
Links Policy

My name is Markos Moulitsas Zúniga. I was born on September 11, 1971.
While born in Chicago, I was raised in El Salvador and lived there until civil war forced our family back to the states in 1980.

My family settled in the Chicago suburbs, where I spent the next long, torturous nine years, plotting my escape.

markos2.jpgImmediately after high school, at the age of 17, I enrolled in the US Army, and served in Lawton, Oklahoma and Bamberg, Germany. I was a 13P -- an MLRS/Lance Fire Direction Specialist (artillery), and served between 1989-92. While my MLRS unit (A/76 FA, 3rd ID) was designated for deployment, the war ended too quickly and I was spared the desert heat and Gulf War Syndrome.

I subsequently received two bachelor degrees from Northern Illinois University (with majors in Philosophy, Political Science and Journalism) and my J.D. from Boston University School of Law (emphasis in trial litigation). I moved to San Francisco to work in the tech industry, where I remain today.

I started Daily Kos on May 26, 2002 (named after my Army nickname), and continue to maintain the site from Berkeley, California. In its first year, Daily Kos attracted over 1.6 million unique visits and about 3 million pageviews. It currently receives about 400,000 600,000 850,000 over one million unique visits per month.

I have also launched the Political State Report, a collaborative weblog (with over 100 contributors) tracking politics from all 50 states, and maintain Fishyshark -- another weblog tracking the daily foibles of impending fatherhood (we're having a baby!).

My heroes are Archbishop Oscar Arnulfo Romero, Cesar Chavez, and most of all, my late father.


Daily Kos: Best Warblog

The TTLB Blogosphere Ecosystem
Daily Kos is consistently one of the top 2 or 3 political weblogs

Most Important 100 Blogs
Consistently ranks in the top 50 of all weblogs

Top 100 Weblogs
Consistently ranks in the top 50 of all weblogs.

Other Media Mentions in Time, Newsday, LA Times, The Oregonian, Washington Post, Spokane Review, New York Observer, American Prospect, Salon, and others, as well as publications from such places as Brazil, Vietnam, Germany and France.


I made studio recordings of my piano compositions in 1996 and 1999. All music is written and performed by me. (Files are in MP3 format)

    1999 recordings
    1996 recordings

1999 Recordings
la morena que yo quiero
Unlike the 1996 recordings, which were a negative experience for me, I had the good fortune of working with Tim Bruhns at Blink Music in Cambridge, MA. Tim's Petrof grand was nothing short of heavenly, and his cozy studio contrasted nicely with the cold sterility of Chicago Music Company. Tim himself was a masterful engineer, massaging great clean performences out of me.

While I intended to make a CD with these recordings, I ran out of money. I do plan on making the CD in the future.
allston musings
exaltation II
simple pleasures
ligero pensamientos
ya regresas
half a world away
along the banks of the charles
apartandome del mundo
res ipsa
1996 Recordings || Solipsistic Affirmations
solipsistic affirmations
CD cover art and poem
(Click on image for CD cover art and liner poem.)

I recorded these songs at Chicago Recording Studios, a large studio in (surprise!) Chicago. In fact the Smashing Pumpkins had recorded the song "Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness" on this very same piano just days before my recording.

However, I was a tiny fish in a studio used to dealing with platinum-selling artists. I was treated like crap and rushed through my sessions. The studio was freezing cold. My trainee engineer had clearly never recorded a piano before and wasted expensive time trying to get an adequate sound.

Given all that, I'm still surprised at the quality of the music. I shouldn't be so surprised -- it was recorded in a top-notch studio on a beautiful 10-foot Bösendorfer grand. And, hey, my music would sound good played on a kazoo!

hold my hand
love song for a tuesday afternoon
green pastels
23 de septiembre
am rhein
for my father

Link policy. As you can no doubt tell, I am extremely stingy on links. As a marketing tactic, that's not very smart -- link exchanges are a great way to promote one's site. It's also not the best way to be a good blogosphere citizen -- I should be helping promote new up-and-coming blogs and playing nice with the established ones as well.

However, everything I do on this site I do for the benefit of my readers. I've always thought that a short blogroll was of more use to visitors than an endless list of random names, and for better or worse, that's the rule by which I now live.

While I have set the number of links on my blogroll in stone, its contents are constantly evolving. I generally include sites I visit at least several times a week, a list that changes over time. So I often add and delete sites accordingly.

So how does a site get listed? Be noticed. Make a stir. Don't regurgitate the contents of a news story, but provide perspective or additional insight. Be clever, funny, original. Get away from the default templates. Get away from Blogspot. Create your own identity. Your own domain. Have attitude. Be self-confident. Participate in the comment boards at dKos or MyDD or Atrios or any number of other sites (a great way to demonstrate your writing acumen). Participate in group weblogs like Stand Down or the Political State Report. Don't be obnoxious or feel entitled to a link. Given my site's readership, have a heavy focus on elections and the political process. And while I appreciate any traffic you send my way, I don't care whether you link to me or not. Or how much traffic you send. Like I said already, I don't use my blogroll as a marketing tool.

And finally, realize that my refusal to add your site to my list isn't a rejection in any way. We desperately need to catch the Right in the Blogger Wars, and I am proud of each and every person who has the guts and initiative to start his or her own weblog. The progressive movement of the future will be built, in large part, on this digital foundation.