Here we are trying to raise funds to bankroll a vital rebuild of NRO — the reasons why are explained cogently by my friend Charlie Cooke — and then the District of Columbia Court of Appeals (some 25 months after a three-judge panel heard our appeal of a wrongheaded initial ruling in the infamous case of Penn State global-warming guru Michael Mann v. National Review) puts a dump truck of coal in our stocking on the 22nd. You want a quick background on the case? Then go read Rich Lowry’s 2012 response to Mann’s lawsuit threat (prompted by this Mark Steyn Corner post from July of that year).
Fight we will. And have been. Let me assure any and all that NR has liability insurance. It’s a seven-figure policy — standard for publications like ours. But that amount has been dipped into significantly (the case is in its fourth year). And the insurance only partially covers legal bills. There is a noteworthy overhead that must come out of NR’s pockets. Which are not deep.
As our editorial states, this case, and the D.C. court’s ruling, are “an unprecedented threat to the freedom of speech.” That is why so many media entities filed amicus briefs in NR’s behalf when we held our last hearing (in November 2014!). So I may be pushing my luck here, asking those of you who have yet to respond to our end-of-the-year webathon to do so now if you believe, as I think you must, that a fight on behalf of conservatives’ right to voice an opinion that Leftists find repugnant is a fight worth having. And worth fighting. And the turf for that fight is NR, here and now, in this very case.
We still need to rebuild NRO (and we will). We need to fight this critical legal fight. And we need to continue standing athwart history, yelling stop, 24/7. With your help. And here’s how you can: Contribute to NR directly here. If you prefer to use PayPal, go here. Or you can mail a check, payable to “National Review,” to 215 Lexington Avenue, 11th Floor, New York, NY 10016. Now, we have had about 1,500 people step up and support us since we began this webathon in late November. We thank them all, and her are some comments from folks who found time over the weekend to send some selfless help.
‐Dear Martha sent $100 and got to the point: “For legal defense.” Done and thanks.
‐Kris sends a cool $25 and states two basic facts: “I’ve long enjoyed NR. The forces of evil clearly do not.” Amen.
‐Michael also withdraws $25 from the piggy bank and sends love too: “Thank you for preserving sanity in the midst of insanity on both sides of the political aisle. I don’t always agree with everything that’s said in the pages of NR and on NRO (most of it), but the courage your authors display in saying what they feel needs to be said helps give me courage to confront our slouching culture each day.” Encouraging words, Mike. Thanks.
‐And with his generous $50 contribution Tim had this to say: “I appreciate the difficulty and potential peril in speaking honestly in a country where there are individuals and groups devoted to making free speech which they oppose by any means, both illegal and punishable, and in which there are those (in the courts, the press and even in the IRS) who work as partners in the dismantling of this basic right that separates us from dictatorships.” Word!