By ChiGal, a regular reader and now commentor
I don’t know how many other members of the commentariat were turned onto Naked Capitalism by their 80 year-old mothers, but I was, around 2010, and it wasn’t long before I was sharing posts with everyone I knew, friends and colleagues both. I was working as a hospice social worker at an inpatient unit at that time and there was a great deal of conversation about the ACA vs Medicare for All here then (and of course again in 2016). I am pretty sure that I made the acquaintance of PNHP, Wendell Potter, and Health Care Renewal through Naked Capitalism. The links and comments about health care were so incredibly relevant to all of our lives and Naked Capitalism was the place to find them. So please help support Naked Capitalism via the donations page.
It took me a few years of being a regular “lurker” to screw up my courage to pipe up, but whether or not I have time to participate, the ongoing discussion at Naked Capitalism is an absolute lifeline for me. My mom died last year at 90 and I can count on the fingers of one hand the people I can talk to who haven’t been lulled into a sort of stupor (“comfortably numb”) by the steady diet of MSM pablum we are fed. The commentariat provides something I really miss about her that none of the other people I know have, which is the ability to put things in context, thanks to her retention of the history, philosophy, and economics she learned in school so long ago.
The erudition and links provided by members of the commentariat on top of the regular posts is nothing short of astounding. I start my day, every day, with Naked Capitalism, and with the brilliant innovation of Water Cooler some years back, I check back in again later. I am beyond grateful for Lambert’s curation of the zeitgeist. His dry wit and innate skepticism belie a profound compassion as well as a sense of justice.
There are so many in the commentariat who have deep knowledge—both book-learning and real-world experience—and frankly leave me in the dust, and yet Naked Capitalism welcomes everyone, whatever their contribution. Even when I go against the grain, so long as I express myself sans logical fallacy and incivility, I feel my voice is heard.
Well, not whatever their contribution actually. Last year’s suspension of comments really hurt—ouch! – who knew January 6 would happen right then? It was just plain awful not to be in touch with the Naked Capitalism community at that time. I don’t think it’s putting it too strongly to say many of us went through withdrawal despite understanding the necessity (hint: the Tip Jar is calling…).
So in addition to depth and breadth, the encouragement of critical thinking, the iron hand of Yves enforcing good faith argumentation, and the tolerance of a wide range of points of view, Naked Capitalism provides a sense of community, a solidarity of the sane in the face of collective insanity. For example: I absolutely cannot bear to watch the TV “debates” anymore without the open thread hosted by Lambert. It is grounding to know that others see and hear what is plainly there but somehow never makes the spin.
Another thing Naked Capitalism excels at is exploring the vexed issue of race; prior to the current debasement of critical race theory for use as a weapon by the PMC there were many profound exchanges: Albion’s Seed was a revelation, as was Adolph Reed, the Black Socialists, and so many others that really moved my thinking. And what more can you ask than to grow? It is probably the best ROI ever and I know I will give what I can and encourage others to do the same.
A final note about Naked Capitalism : it is a place of compassion, and this I think is down to Yves. Despite suffering no fools and not hesitating to provide tongue lashings when deemed necessary, by sharing her own personal trials and tribulations she created an environment in which others felt they could do the same, and much is the sharing and many the responses of understanding and encouragement. Thank you to Yves, Lambert, Jerri-Lynn, Nick, Jules, and all the rest for demonstrating that there is yet a flicker of humanity in the land.