Last year the June Water Cooler mini-fundraiser was very successful, and we need you to help us make it just as much a success this year as last. Water Cooler provides both business and political coverage and commentary, and in both realms the torrent of propaganda and sheer bullsh*t has become almost overwhelming. Water Cooler helps all of us maintain our footing in that torrent.
Besides providing general business news, Water Cooler files all the scamming and grifting and phishing under the heading of “The Bezzle,” provides a contextual view of official statistics, maintains a watch on important indices, and follows shipping and supply chain news as a non-financial window into globalization. In politics, Water Cooler provides detailed, gritty coverage of important races, like the one Jon Ossoff just lost, of sausage-making on policy, especially health care, and tracks the continuing legitimacy crisis of the political class as a whole, especially out in the “flyover states.” In addition, Water Cooler covers ecological news under climate change, gives dispatches from the front of Class Warfare. That’s a lot of material to cover and bullshit to wade through on a daily basis!
Independent funding is key to having an independent editorial point of view. As Matt Stoller wrote in 2011:
The truth is, you can get lies for free. Wall Street is only too happy to buy advertising, to make sure you hear from their well-credentialed experts. If you are not paying for your media, though, then they are. And you aren’t the customer, you are the product being sold. While this arrangement works, what it means is that you’ll get lies for free. And this is a very expensive proposition. So I hope that you’ll consider, if you haven’t already, putting some dollars towards the Naked Capitalism fundraiser. If you can’t afford much, give only a few bucks. If you can afford more, give more. If you can afford to give a lot, give a lot. It will pay for itself, I guarantee you. This isn’t just giving, it’s a statement that you are want a different debate, a different society, and a different culture. It’s about saying you are tired of the lies you are being fed for free, and are willing to put your valuable resources into reshaping how information in our society flows. It will help policy-makers understand that if they make good decisions, they have allies, and if they don’t, they have enemies.
We’ve been able to deliver independent, hard-hitting commentary, analysis, and original reporting because we are independently funded. Lambert volunteered to add Water Cooler as an additional feature so we could be more timely and comprehensive. But Water Cooler is a separate store front within Naked Capitalism to pay for his considerable effort on it over and above all the work he already does on the site (and for which he is paid out of the annual fundraiser). Lambert has a separate Tip Jar in Water Cooler, under the Plantidotes that you all send in.
Despite Water Cooler getting consistently high traffic levels all this year and plenty of comments, donations to it fell sharply since the shock of the election wore off, and have remained flat ever since. To be crass, Lambert is making well under a living wage for his work on Water Cooler and that is not right. We need you to live up to what we hope is one of the widely-held values in the commentariat, that people should be paid fairly for their work, especially work that has already been done! That means digging into your wallets, whether a little or for a lot, and chipping in for Water Cooler.
We’d like to get broad-based participation from the NC community. So even if you can only make a small contribution, we’d still appreciate that, because we also have readers who can make much bigger donations. Our target is 250 donors, and we’d like to return to our regularly scheduled programming as soon as possible. I thank you; Lambert thanks you.
Here is the link to Lambert’s Tip Jar. Please click the hat!
If you are allergic to PayPal (note that you can use a credit card or debit card on PayPal), you can send mail to lambert [UNDERSCORE] strether [DOT] corrente [AT] yahoo [DOT] com, and he will give you directions on how to send a check.
* Yes, Lambert also gets paid out of the annual fundraiser, but that is for the considerable amount of work he does besides Water Cooler, such as DJing the site, helping manage the comments section, managing a lot of the tech issues, and helping in tooth-gnashing over other “business of running the business” matters.