Two Days Left in Our Fundraiser

So far, we’ve had over 620 of you chip in for our fundraiser, and are well on our way to reaching our goal of 750 donations. So far, these contributors have paid for upgrades to site speed and service, a travel budget, meaningful “thank yous” to the regular guest bloggers, vacation support to keep the site vibrant while I get some R&R, and a grab bag of smaller site enhancements, like a mobile version of the site and audio equipment for podcasts. Thanks to your speedy response, we’ve given our tech support the go ahead to get moving on the site upgrade, and we’ll be showing you a possible site design for your input in the next few days. OUr final target is $11,000 for various “buying my time back” types of support, so I can spend more time on things that help provide more information and posts to the community, such as some limited but regular secretarial support and ongoing assistance with Links and research. While volunteers can also be tremendously valuable, having things happen on a regular, routinized basis usually requires a financial outlay. We already have $1,800 toward this goal as of the start of this day.

The goal here is to build a culture where we pay for truth, instead of being lied to for free. Guest posters Bill Black and Philip Pilkington have described why we are engaged in this effort: because ignorance had a high price and in the wake of the crisis, confusion and the dead grip of failed ideology make it hard to discern the outlines of a power structure in crisis. Even Congressman Brad Miller chimed in on Facebook:

This is a fundraising appeal for the blog Naked Capitalism, but Matt Stoller’s description of the control of information about financial issues by the industry is dead on. James Kwak, also a blogger, calls it “cognitive capture”: don’t you want to be one of us sophisticated, serious people, instead of part of the populist rabble?

Here’s what some of you have to say:

After I read your book, I then started reading your blog, and now it’s the first thing I check every day. I even put the juciest stories on my Facebook for my friends to see.

NC is my go-place on the web

I really like your perspective on and critique of economics and the complacent, self-serving puffery of much of modern economics.

Although I must keep my lantern lighted in search of an honest man, I have at last found another honest woman. If I were not happily married, I would propose to you on the spot. Keep up the incredible good work!

I’m overwhelmed by your generosity. There are just two days left, so it’s time to join us as we make sure this site can do an even better job of promoting critical thinking and presenting the unvarnished truth.

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  1. Brian Dominick

    I am “between jobs” right now, but I just started donating $5 monthly because I know the importance of reader-supported media. I used to work at a collective online newspaper called The NewStandard that operated entirely on reader donations (no ads, no foundation money — truly independent).

    Please, folks, stop expecting everything to be “free”. It’s not. If YOU do not donate, there’s no magical gnome that is going to do it in your stead.

    Thanks Yves for this invaluable resource; I hope your loyal readers make it possible for you to keep going for a long time.

  2. monday1929

    After pushing for indictments of Jamie Dimon and his ilk for the past few years, I decided it was hypocritical to continue using Chase’s credit cards. If our Youth are willing to risk life and limb in Zucotti Park, perhaps I should give up my 5% cash-back on gasoline. So, by the end of next week I will be done with Chase, Citi and the other criminal banks.
    Can someone match my action on that?

    I will now donate $100.00, can anyone match that?
    Thirdly, I will pledge a portion of profits (if any) on a massive (for me) Put position in Jan 2013 Puts on Morgan Stanley and other RICO types.

    To the Tip Jar NOW.

    1. Steve

      I thought about getting rid of my tbtf bank credit card, but what I don’t know is how the fees are split. I assume Visa/MC take the most of it. In that case, changing banks would not have a lot of effect.

      Can someone describe how the fee splitting typically works between Visa/MC and the bank? Both for the % fee on every transaction and interest on carried balance.


      1. Brian Dominick

        The processing fees are mostly collected by Visa, the gateway companies (that provide the technical backbone for credit card purchases), and the merchant/vendor’s bank(s). Your issuing bank (TBTF in this case) collects on the interest. It is the bank’s money (well, you know, the bank’s representation of reserves) that you’re borrowing when you use the card. There might also be some kickbacks involved between Visa and the issuer, etc, depending on the arrangement. So mainly if you’re ever paying interest on a carried balance, that’s you giving to the big banks. Also you’re legitimizing their card every time you use it, symbolically. I have a credit union card that people ask me about, so I’m promoting the credit union every time I pull it out.

        1. Steve

          Thanks Brian, that makes excellent sense. If I’m not carrying a balance, most or all of the fees go to Visa/MC, balance interest mostly goes to the bank. I follow the bit about free advertising for them, wish we had a credit union in reach (we live in a rural area).


          1. Brian Dominick

            We do what we can, Steve. There are a million other ways to stand up against the big banks. You could put a sticker on your credit card that says something clever like “I ONLY USE THIS BECAUSE I HAVE NO CHOICE” or just “THEY ARE THE 1%, I AM THE 99%” or whatever works for you.

      2. Jeff

        If the following isn’t a great inducement to use cash with small merchants and checks for larger purchases, I don’t know what is….

        There are several things that occur once that credit card has been swiped through the reader to complete a transaction.


        A credit card has a magnetic stripe, sometimes referred to as a “magstripe,” on the back. Contained within the magstripe are three tracks. Each of these tracks contains different information that details the cardholder and the credit card account.

        After the magstripe is swiped, the credit card processor sends the information to the banking institution that issued the credit card and confirms that there is enough credit available to make the purchase. It then approves or declines the sale based on that response.
        Merchant Fee

        When you use a credit card, it costs the merchant money. The credit card company not only makes money from you, the consumer, in the form of interest payments, but it also takes a slice of the pie from the merchant. This is why some merchants have a “minimum” amount that can be charged, or a fee for paying by card. Otherwise, on a small purchase they might be giving up their whole profit.

        When you use a credit card at the store, you are agreeing to make a payment at a later date. But the store receives payment from the bank that issued the credit card within the next day.

        There are four pieces to the puzzle when a payment is made: the merchant (the store or business; the acquirer, which is set up to process the transactions; the issuer (the bank that will make the payment); and the network manager.

        Visa and MasterCard are examples of the network manager. They provide the network on which transactions take place. So one swipe of the card actually affects four separate entities in terms of payment. And it affects you, probably most of all.
        Time Line

        When you make a purchase on your credit card, you might notice the word “pending” next to the purchase when you log on to your bank or credit card account. This means the merchant has not yet received the money for the transaction. The money must first be transferred from the issuing bank, through the acquirer (sometimes referred to as the merchant bank), and ultimately to the merchant. This can take a couple of days.
        Purchase Protection

        Under the Fair Credit Billing Act, a consumer may withhold payment on a purchase on poor quality or damaged merchandise. To get this protection, the purchase must be greater than $50 and you must call your credit card company to stop payment to the merchant. Also, the purchase must have taken place within 100 miles of where you live.

        Although the amount and mileage are technical parts of the law, many credit card companies will provide purchase protection for purchases made for less than that amount or outside that radius. Additionally, as credit card companies became more competitive with each other, more protections were extended in terms of warranties. Each purchase protection plan is different, so contact your credit card company to learn about its purchase protection on your credit cards.


        True Cost of Credit: Americans Spend $50 Billion on Credit Card Processing Fees Every Year!
        MasterCard: How it Works
        Creditor Web: Purchase Protection
        DED Limited: Magnetic Stripe Card Standards

    1. EmilianoZ

      Buzz, the mailing address is in the kickoff post:

      The relevant paragraph:

      “There are multiple channels for donating. The first are here on the blog, the “Donate” and “Subscribe” buttons in the upper right, both of which take you to PayPal. If you are allergic to PayPal, you can send a check (or multiple post dated checks, if you want to spread out payments) in the name of Aurora Advisors Incorporated to Aurora Advisors Incorporated, 903 Park Avenue, 8th Floor, New York, NY 10075. Please also send an e-mail to with the headline “Check is in the mail” (and just the $ en route in the message) so we can count your contribution in the total number of donations.”

  3. Tim Solanic

    Yves – “grab bag of smaller site enhancements, like a mobile version of the site and audio equipment for podcast” .

    Aren’t you using WordPress? There’s an awesome mobile plug in that’s donation ware.

    You have a Mac right? Have you simply tried that for podcasts?

    How can we chat about cleaning up & redesigning all the ads on the site so it’s prettier, more UI friendly, more relevant & would generate more dough?

    I also have “job listing” ideas you could charge for AND more importantly, help “the 99%ers” which would reinforce the awesome NC brand.

    Keep up the great work!


  4. 2laneIA

    Site redesign: The “recent items” at the top of the page are so faint I have to squint closely to read them. It was not always thus, but changed sometime in the last few weeks. The title, Recent Items, is dark, but the links are faint.

    1. citizendave

      During the past few weeks someone else brought up the point about Recent Items being difficult to read. That person asserted that the problem code is the “opacity” setting. I’m using Windows 7 and Firefox – when I right click on the page and select “view page source”, and search for “opacity”, I find the following code. “…Recent Items…opacity: 0.25;’>…” I get the same result in IE as well. I don’t know where to change that setting in the WordPress UI, but I would bet that changing the opacity setting to 1.0 would make that section easier to read.

      Because I was a tech support person, I couldn’t resist commenting on this. This is the kind of thing I think volunteers could help with. Or perhaps it would be useful to have a section on the blog where we could report bugs or problems or suggestions. Many of us would love to be able to put our shoulders to the wheel to help Yves.

  5. doublezed

    I just donated what I could. I just came across this website and, outside of the typical over-interpreting, -reacting, and defensiveness of much of the commenting public and of the occasional blogger, the critical inquiry of capitalist structures and history here looks pretty sharp. Ah, utility. Thanks for your work. -sz

  6. Phil Kozel

    Keep up the great work! I just subscribed, finally. I hit your site first thing every morning and have been for years now. While I use ECONNED in my international finance class, I also send them here for current news.

  7. tz

    Truth is often lacking. Especially with the theokeynesian guest posts.

    Yet the site is valuable for the occasional beacons of actual, verifiable DATA the msm won’t report among the speculation, opinion, and commentary.

  8. Travizm

    done it….$5/mnth.

    I want to be part of something that I think is going to groundswell.

    Yves….the next step im interested in is how to mobilize and create difference.

    I feel many readers are itching to be active on these issues….I hope you can find the time and donations and whatnot to make a platform for this.



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