Closing Hours of 2022 Mini-Fundraiser for Water Cooler!

Patient and generous readers, we are now at 290 donors, which is a bit over 80% of this year’s goal of 350. If you have been waiting until the last minute to make your contribution — you can click to donate here — now is the time. If you can only give a little, give a little; every little bit helps! If you can give a lot, do feel free to give a lot!

Here are some of the kind messages readers have sent:

With daily thanks. . . –A.T.

WC is a daily necessity in this household. Grateful for what you do. –C.K.

Thanks for the daily content! Very thorough and well documented. –B.F.

You (and the NC crew) are the best source of information on the internet, bar none. –M.H.

Thanks for all the sorting — love the shipping news! –L.L.

Thanks for the daily dose of close reading and commentary on a range of topics. I do need a second helping of Naked Capitalism after the morning’s Links and appreciate the work you do to provide it! –J.I.

Can’t wait until 2pm for most days. The daily Links usually comes out at the beginning of my work day but by 2 pm I am thirsting for the water cooler. Many thanks. –M.T.

With deepest appreciation for all that you do! –L.W.J.

Thanks for all the hard work! –J.J.

Keep up the great work! — S. Intro

Just keep doin’ what yer doin’ –D.E

It’s funny to see that many other commenters have passed on your witticisms to friends like I do, “Lambert says….” You’re the best. –C.T.

If NC’s analysis of the extent of the US elite’s blundering is on target, we’re in for some very difficult times in which NC will be essential. –W.E.

How nice that you (and we) find yourself just where you belong —-M.K.

Your wit, wisdom and writing ability really stand out at the Water Cooler. I want to do my part to make sure it continues. I’m very thankful that there is a place to go to find thoughtful, intelligent discussions on relate to topics. You are truly an oasis in this crazy world. –D.M.

Hope the fundraiser is a big success! –A.M.

If you see yourself in any of these comments, then please do what you can to keep Water Cooler going. As Yves writes:

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.

One final word: Readers, I could not write Water Cooler without your careful attentiveness to word and fact, your critical thinking skills, your remarkably broad range of experience (especially working experience), your willingness to engage in debate, and your willingness to be pleased by what is after all a very eclectic and constantly shifting collection of bright shiny objects. I could not write Water Cooler without you. (Well, I suppose I could, but it certainly wouldn’t be any fun.) So I thank you for your as well.

You may donate here:

Here is the screen that will appear, which I have helpfully annotated.

If you hate PayPal, you can email me at lambert [UNDERSCORE] strether [DOT] corrente [AT] yahoo [DOT] com, and I will give you directions on how to send a check. Thank you!

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About Lambert Strether

Readers, I have had a correspondent characterize my views as realistic cynical. Let me briefly explain them. I believe in universal programs that provide concrete material benefits, especially to the working class. Medicare for All is the prime example, but tuition-free college and a Post Office Bank also fall under this heading. So do a Jobs Guarantee and a Debt Jubilee. Clearly, neither liberal Democrats nor conservative Republicans can deliver on such programs, because the two are different flavors of neoliberalism (“Because markets”). I don’t much care about the “ism” that delivers the benefits, although whichever one does have to put common humanity first, as opposed to markets. Could be a second FDR saving capitalism, democratic socialism leashing and collaring it, or communism razing it. I don’t much care, as long as the benefits are delivered. To me, the key issue — and this is why Medicare for All is always first with me — is the tens of thousands of excess “deaths from despair,” as described by the Case-Deaton study, and other recent studies. That enormous body count makes Medicare for All, at the very least, a moral and strategic imperative. And that level of suffering and organic damage makes the concerns of identity politics — even the worthy fight to help the refugees Bush, Obama, and Clinton’s wars created — bright shiny objects by comparison. Hence my frustration with the news flow — currently in my view the swirling intersection of two, separate Shock Doctrine campaigns, one by the Administration, and the other by out-of-power liberals and their allies in the State and in the press — a news flow that constantly forces me to focus on matters that I regard as of secondary importance to the excess deaths. What kind of political economy is it that halts or even reverses the increases in life expectancy that civilized societies have achieved? I am also very hopeful that the continuing destruction of both party establishments will open the space for voices supporting programs similar to those I have listed; let’s call such voices “the left.” Volatility creates opportunity, especially if the Democrat establishment, which puts markets first and opposes all such programs, isn’t allowed to get back into the saddle. Eyes on the prize! I love the tactical level, and secretly love even the horse race, since I’ve been blogging about it daily for fourteen years, but everything I write has this perspective at the back of it.


  1. Irrational

    Threw in my bit despite the cookie warnings taking up all the real estate in EU land. Thanks for the navigation help.

  2. sporble

    Sorry I’m so late – waybehind on my reading (March 28!) and somehow must’ve noticed (was in Mr. Subliminal?) the word “fundraiser” on the screen… In any case, just sent you a donation.
    THANKS for all you do, Lambert!
    Like all of NC, you truly contribute to maintaining some form of sanity in this ever-so-sanity-challenged world…

  3. Art_DogCT

    Ser Lambert! as I am in thrall to the Social Security Administration, I am most pleased that my monthly infusion appeared today instead of April 4, and am further pleased to share a bit of it with you. As many have said, 2:00PM Water Cooler is an irreplaceable part of keeping myself informed/sane/connected. (I will stipulate that my assertion of sanity in any degree argues facts not in evidence.)

    I’ve not been much for using Twitter on my own, beyond following NC links. Your patronage of artbots and sharing some of the fruit thereof inspired me to use Twitter similarly, looking for art to use with a simple jigsaw puzzle PC game. The two activities – looking for interesting artwork and then working puzzles based on them – have been interesting, fun, and therapeutic during some very many, very gloomy months. “So, thanks!”

    (Reference to Laurie Anderson’s Let X=X from her album Big Science. Lyrics here: – [not music] video here: for anyone having an nostalgia for life circa 1982. Quote at ~02:30:00.)

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      > Your patronage of artbots and sharing some of the fruit thereof inspired me to use Twitter similarly, looking for art to use with a simple jigsaw puzzle PC game. The two activities – looking for interesting artwork and then working puzzles based on them – have been interesting, fun, and therapeutic during some very many, very gloomy months

      What a neat idea. I wonder if one sees an artwork differently after having completed a puzzle made from it?

      1. Art_DogCT

        For me, completing a puzzle is often illuminating. If the source file is of sufficient resolution it’s possible to see details of the application of paint, for example. The time spent gives the opportunity to study a work in a focused way a more casual view can’t provide.

        The program I use is the unfortunately named Jigsaws Galore. The game has a fairly large library of images that I found boring, but importing any graphics file is easy. Thus my hunt for art for puzzle fodder. The program allows you to set the number of pieces in a puzzle up to 6,580. (This would be insane unless you had a whacking big monitor.) I’ve settled in at 300-350 pieces at the moment. As puzzles, images that include large areas of one color with little or no variation are much more difficult and, for me, frustrating. Those get saved for sharing via social media.

        I’ve gathered over 2,100 images by 1030 artists. It wouldn’t surprise me if half that number of artists were completely new to me before indulging in this activity. Mostly oil/acrylic/mixed-media painting, watercolors, prints, a bit of photography, and some digitally created work. I’d say the collection is about 60% representational work, 40% abstract. I particularly like finding living artists to explore. When I share an artist’s work I include links in the hope that my small effort may lead to someone buying from them. (Dead artists don’t need our support.)

  4. McDee

    With the BS-O-Meter stuck in the Red Zonet the Links and the Water Cooler are a daily necessity. Thanks to all of you at NC for everything you do! Just sent a donation your way.

  5. Tvc15

    Well earned donation coming all the way from central Maine. Appreciate the wit, occasional music clip and perspective in these clarifying times.

  6. Randall Flagg

    Donation will be coming as soon as I get back next week.
    More often than I should admit, even if I was on the top of Mount Everest, numerous posts and comments still go over my head. But yet, I believe that education here continues until the day we shed our mortal coil.
    For that I am grateful not just for the Water Cooler but this entire site and all involved, including the commenters.

  7. Brunches with Cats

    Made it, literally the 11th hour. Hopefully there will be many more behind me (since there are a few more 11th hours west of here) and with deeper pockets.

  8. Stillfeelinthebern

    Thank you Lambert. Settling in at night with the water-cooler is how we end the day. We especially appreciate your in depth reporting on Covid, the gardening/plant talk AND the bird songs!

  9. Leftcoastindie

    Sorry I’m a day late. Dropped a few coins in the can. Water Cooler is one of my must reads every day.
    Thanks for what you do.

  10. Flyover Boy

    I’m not aware of any other single source that brings truth to power on the most vital issues of the day, from Democrat rot to Covid to the war to global warming. If you were gone, I wouldn’t know any satisfactory substitute for you. And I’m personally grateful that this site’s advices have meaningfully defended the health of my family and myself when the entire power structure hasn’t given two damns whether we all choke to death. I consider my small donation to be an investment. Your work is… wonderfully clarifying. :.)

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