We’ve had to be careful to rely only on original formulations around here since Jonah published his new book, but I’ll hazard a cliché right at the top of this fundraising pitch because it’s so true: This is the most consequential election of our lifetimes. In fact, between now and November, I’m not sure that the word “consequential” should be used in any other context.
Hope and change has failed at nearly everything, except making the stakes in our politics utterly unmistakable. President Obama is the American Hollande. In our context he is the left-most plausible champion for the Democrats. They have to settle for him because they can’t elect Nancy Pelosi or Dick Durbin president. During his first two years, the president pushed as far left as he possibly could while still winning passage of his stimulus, health care, and financial bills, and he dared call it “moderation.”
With the economy sagging again, the near-universal agreement on the left and the right is that his reelection campaign has no choice but to resort to the Borking of Mitt Romney. For all those people struggling in the tepid recovery, Obama’s response over the next five months will be, “Let them eat canards and misdirections.” It will be some new smear, some new dishonesty, some new excuse every day all the way to November 6.
In other words, for us, it will be great for business. One of the reasons we exist is to rebut errant nonsense. So if we have to follow around President Obama’s circus elephant of a reelection campaign with a brigade of shovelers, we’ll gladly do it.
We’re here to serve. I’m not sure any publication in the English language has devoted more coverage to the HHS mandate. I’m guessing we wrote more about the Lugar–Mourdock race than any outlet outside the State of Indiana. We’ve interviewed Governor Walker at least a half-a-dozen times since the onset of the labor wars in Wisconsin. We’re all over our man Ted Cruz’s campaign to upset David Dewhurst and join the conservative caucus in the Senate.
I recount all of this not simply to toot our own horn, as you can guess, but to get you to consider all that NRO does and to ask you to help. National Review has never been a commercial enterprise and never will be. No one is here to make money. The idea always has been, going back to the 1950s, that so long as we are showing the flag and defending it, our friends will be there to keep us in operation. And so it has been.
We’ve never been owned by a corporation or a billionaire. We’ve always been a plucky, independent publication with only one benefactor: you.
In this most consequential year, we hope you’ll be there for us again. NRO endeavors to provide you pertinent reporting, trenchant commentary, and stimulating debate 24/7 — for free. For us, it’s all about spreading the message and fighting for our ideas. But we do have to keep the lights on, which is why we turn to you. All I ask is that you think what NRO is worth to you and give as much as you can on that basis. If it is $5, we’ll be grateful. We’re thankful for every widow’s mite. If it’s $5,000, you’ll have a friend in Jack Fowler for life. And all of it will be plowed into what we do here.
It will pay for Mark Steyn and Jonah Goldberg, for Victor Davis Hanson and Ramesh Ponnuru, for Jay Nordlinger and Bob Costa, for Kevin Williamson and Kathryn Lopez, for the ceaseless stream of analysis, reportage, and tomfoolery that is the Corner, for Jim Geraghty’s Campaign Spot and for Ed Whelan’s Bench Memos, for all the others here who happily toil to produce, edit, and maintain this website toward one overarching goal — saving this country, restoring its greatness, and preserving liberty as we have known it for another generation.
I can’t tell you how many of our writers say “NRO readers are the best.” And it’s really true. I think I speak for everyone here when I say it is the professional privilege of a lifetime to write and to edit for you. All we want to do is keep doing it, but for that, we need your help. Please chip in if you can, and thank you for hearing me out — as always.