Politics & Policy

Honor & Glory

The full-metal pitch.

Hi, I’m Jonah Goldberg. You may know me from such websites as “Is-this-physically-possible?-dot-com” and “still-legal-in-nevada-dot-org.” The “.org,” by the way, means “extra classy.”

Anyway, I also helped found National Review Online and for quite a while I was the editor. Now, I’m the editor-at-large of NRO and Kathryn Lopez runs the show (under the soul-killing supervision of Rich Lowry and the suits). When I’m done with this #$%^& book, I’ll be moving back to full-time G-File writing.

I’m here today to ask for help from you cats (that’s a figure of speech, by the way, if Cosmo’s listening). I couldn’t possibly begin to exaggerate how proud I am of NRO and all that it has accomplished and will accomplish in the future–that is, once I rally the exile groups and retake the NRO capital. Just kidding.

With a fraction of a fraction of what our competition in the elite media has to spend, National Review Online has become the Mobutu Sese Seko Kuku Ngbendu waza Banga of the worldwide web. But being the all-powerful rooster who, because of his endurance and inflexible will to win, will go from conquest to conquest leaving fire in his wake, isn’t Christina Aguilera–by which I mean it ain’t cheap or easy.

Fact: National Review On Dead Tree loses money because it is more committed to its principles and mission than it is to making the Fat Benjamins. If it were otherwise, we would be seeking the lapidary insights of, say, Ms. Aguilera on everything from the Second Amendment to the dangers of immanetizing the eschaton. NRODT is NRO’s mothership. It is the machine that goes “ping” in our life-support system. It is our methadone clinic and soup kitchen all in one. If it goes, we spiral off into oblivion. And, if that happens, beer nuts and Western Civilization cannot be far behind.

Fact: National Review Online loses money too. So not only is the mothership losing fuel, the away team is in trouble too.

Fact: We rely on folks like you to enable us to keep the lights on and our Hasbro(r) Digital Easy-Bake-Oven cooking up mounds of moist and chewy conservative commentary up and running.

Fact: My pitch for cash last year was much better.

Look: In all seriousness, if you think NRO is a value to you and to society, thanks, we think so too. But we could really use your help. I know pledge drives have acquired the faint whiff of Swedish economics because of their association with National Public Radio and Bill Moyers. But we reject all of that. We don’t take taxpayer dollars and then go around dunning the public to cover the redecorating bill. We’re asking, in effect, that our customers pay us on the honor system. We provide the product in good faith and all we’d like is a couple coins to rattle in the jar in return. I appeal to your conservative disdain for free riders. I appeal to your conscience. I appeal to your sympathy, because sure as shinola I’ll be the first to go if we don’t make payroll. We are immensely proud of our readers for their support, their loyalty, their rugged good looks. If you can help a bit–by donating or subscribing to NR Digital or NR on Dead Tree–we’ll be prouder still.

Thanks.

Jonah Goldberg — Jonah Goldberg holds the Asness Chair in Applied Liberty at the American Enterprise Institute and is a senior editor of National Review. His new book, The Suicide of The West, is on sale now.

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