It would be rather easy to double The BRAD BLOG's readership in a week or quadruple it in a month. It's a pretty simple matter to pound out short "Look What This Republican Idiot Did Today!" items and other similar knee-jerkery. It brings in tons of traffic. But there are plenty of places that do that. Instead, I've tried, since opening this joint almost 10 years ago, to offer stuff that actually matters. We may not always succeed, but that is always my hope. I have tried since our inception to choose carefully what we devote attention to, in hopes of publishing things that we can actually add something beyond "me too-ism." It has always been my goal to remain a unique place on the worldwide Internets where focusing on helping to better educate the electorate is the prime directive.
That, however, doesn't necessarily bring torrents of clicks and eyeballs. Yes, it's easy to offer crap that brings clicks. Sideboobage, literal and otherwise, makes lots of money for its progenitors, and it's really easy.
There is a reason that The BRAD BLOG does not receive regular financial support from either foundations or corporations, and it's not because I'm against the idea, in principle --- so long as we'd be allowed to maintain 100% editorial independence. But it's because we are truly independent here, unlike many of some of the finest progressive websites on the net, that we find ourselves now in our tenth year still raking the muck on our own, with only reader support to help keep us in rakes.
By way of just one recent example, I didn't even bother trying to pitch our exclusive investigative special report last week on what happened to the attempted Prop 37 "recount" to any other news sites. Though my independent work at such places helps to fund what we do here, it's unlikely that any of those sites, even progressive news sites, would be interested in paying for such a report that isn't particularly sexy and calls both Republican and Democratic officials on the carpet. It took some three weeks (at least) of digging and researching to make that report possible. And you'll only find that sort of work --- and my KPFK radio report that followed it in support --- generated here at The BRAD BLOG, despite how important I believe that story is to the nation; despite national election expert and UC Irvine law professor Rick Hasen declaring that it "calls for a legislative response"; and despite the fact that meetings are taking place this coming week in Sacramento to discuss what can be done about some of the problems that special report helped to expose.
I could detail many other things that The BRAD BLOG does and offers exclusively, or, at least, unlike any other place on the net, but hopefully you get the idea.
Nonetheless, despite my recent plea with our 9th Anniversary announcement, only a tiny fraction of the thousands who read this site regularly and/or every day, answered the call to chip in support to help keep us going. I'd really like to make it through our 10th year (and beyond!), but unless something around here changes, that may be very difficult, if not impossible.
So, not to belabor this, I'm going to simply re-run below the section from that recent announcement that includes easy options I hope more of you will consider using to help keep us going.
We've got only a few signed books left. [We've now sold the last of those, thanks! So if you now want one, please grab one at the author, Marta Steele's website!]. My thanks to those of you who have already chipped in after previous recent pleas (and, especially, to those of you who signed up to be sustaining monthly supporters!). But, to be perfectly blunt, we need more help. If you can afford to do so, I hope you will consider it. If you can't, I certainly understand. I hate asking, but I must. Either that, or I can start running nothing but "Republicans Suck!" videos and sideboobage! You'll let me know what you prefer.
Here then, once again, are a few easy ways that you can help us keep going...
• ONE-TIME DONATION
If you are inclined, out of pure thanks for what we do here, and/or encouragement to continue, we'd ask that you hit our tip-jar with an online "anniversary gift" of any amount you'd like.
You can contribute with either a credit card or PayPal at that link. Alternately, snail mail support to "Brad Friedman, 7095 Hollywood Blvd., #594 Los Angeles, CA 90028" is also very much appreciated!
A one-time donation of any amount, from $10 to $1,000,000, is quite welcome! (We'll even be grateful for $5 if that's what you have to offer. Truly.)
• MONTHLY SUSTAINING SUBSCRIPTION
Even more than a one-time donation, sustaining, automated, monthly contributions of any amount you can comfortably afford is greatly appreciated as well.
Monthly sustaining subscriptions of any amount you like are a quick and easy matter to create, via credit card or PayPal, as you prefer, and help to keep us alive year round! (For amounts other than those in the drop-down box below, please see the form in the light blue box mid-way down our right sidebar where you can specify any number!)
• COOL NEW PREMIUM OFFER!
[NOTE/UPDATE: We've now sold the last of the limited number of signed copies of Marta Steele's new book! Thanks for those who purchased! If you'd like one now, please grab one at Marta's website! And, otherwise, read on below to find out about this very cool new book, in which we are featured quite prominently throughout!]
If supporting The BRAD BLOG for the sake of support alone isn't enough to help you crack open your wallets, don't worry! We've got something to help sweeten the deal!...
Marta Steele's newly published book, Grassroots, Geeks, Pros, and Pols: The Election Integrity Movement's Rise and Nonstop Battle to Win Back the People's Vote, 2000 - 2008, may be just the ticket!
Finally, someone has endeavored to tell the real story of actual election fraud concerns in this country, and of the rag tag band of citizen patriots who have been quietly --- and sometimes not so quietly --- fighting against all odds to restore the very underpinnings of our democracy: the vote, the right to have that voted counted, and the right of we, the people, to know that it has been counted accurately.
Steele chronicles the story of real American citizens and the fight for real democracy, while the rest of Rome --- and the partisans and the mainstream corporate media --- fiddle and burn.
She also cites our work here at The BRAD BLOG hundreds of times throughout her book, beginning on page 1. (Thank you, Marta!)
Readers of this site know that the story of U.S. democracy's sorry swoon over the past decade has not been in the horse races, but in the track conditions on which those horses have run. In Steele's book, she finally documents what many of us have been trying to do about those conditions, and what the horses have left behind on the track.
While the accompanying "Endnotes" CD alone, included with the book and featuring TONS of supporting material, is well worth the price of admission all by itself, frankly, the book also includes a foreword by our friend Greg Palast, a preface by our friend Danny Schechter and an intro by our friends Bob Fitrakis and Harvey Wasserman.
Steele has generously contributed a limited number of signed copies of Grassroots, Geeks, Pros and Pols to readers of The BRAD BLOG in support of our work here (thank you again, Marta!!!) Please consider grabbing yourself a copy, while supplies last, right here in support of our work as well!...
SOLD OUT OF OUR SIGNED COPIES! THANKS!
GRAB A COPY OF THE BOOK AT MARTA STEELE'S WEBSITE!