The Corner

NR Webathon

Marathon Mann

(Photo via GoodFreePhotos.com)

We are in this fight to defend free speech for the long haul, no matter its length, no matter the costs. As Rich Lowry wondered / encouraged, our 2019 Fall Webathon is taking place in part to help defray the great expense of the assault on the First Amendment that is the consequence of Mann v. National Review. Please read Rich’s appeal, which raises a big question that no one ever seems to ask of the false claimant of the Nobel Peace Prize – who’s bankrolling him? From Rich’s article:

All I need to do is Google my own name or open my Twitter mentions to see excoriating criticisms of my work, my views, and my personality, among many other things associated with me and this publication. It never occurred to me to sue anyone over any of this because I have a keen awareness of the fact that we live in a free society (for now).

Michael Mann apparently lacks this awareness, or at least he hasn’t fully absorbed the implications.

So much the worse for him, but the system is supposed to have procedural and legal protections against the abuse of the courts to harass publications in violation of the First Amendment.

For seven long years, the courts have failed to bring to bear those protections in this case. Meanwhile, the very harm that is supposed to be avoided — the harassment of a publication for exercising its rights — has taken place. Our operations have hardly ground to a halt, but we’ve had to devote time to the litigation and, more importantly for a cash-strapped little magazine like ours, spend money defending ourselves.

Those funds would be much better spent hiring another writer or editor, or holding debates and events around the country, or on a thousand different things directly related to our cause. Instead, we have been compelled by this suit to divert resources from exercising our First Amendment rights to fighting a litigant determined to crimp them.

We have no idea if Mann has some anonymous backer funding his litigation, but he very well might. I can assure you, though, that we have none. All we have is you, which is why we are asking you to chip in whatever you can to help us out.

So far over 700 people have seen sit to provide NR with selfless kindness, in amounts ranging from the Widow’s Mite to $2,500 in one quite generous case – they are all of them our brothers and sisters in arms on behalf of shared principles and unalienable rights. Some give not only material support, but comments worth a lot more than two cents. Here are a few:

  • Andrew from parts unknown . . . with $50. Along with it is a pat on the back: “ ‘If any man seeks greatness, let him forget greatness and seek the truth, and he will find both.’ —Horace Mann. Apt words for the work of NR and Staff. I am humbled by your necessity in my edification, honored to donate to your cause.” Thanks for showing that there is someone who does honor to the name Mann.
  • Donald in Colorado also give 50 smackers and cries out “Fight the post-modernist with all you have!” OK, but we need to save some for the post-post-modernists too.
  • Lois in Phoenix drops a C Note on us and puts it quite simply: “God bless National Review and America!” Hey, and Lois too!
  • Mackerels of holiness, in Bradenton big John sends $2,000 – yeah, two grand – and has a powerful message for us: “In these dark days for conservatism — Trump taking over the GOP and authoritarian leftists taking over the Democratic Party — the National Review’s message becomes even essential.” John, you rock.
  • In Lancaster (CA), Colleen reveals her age as she sends a kindly $50 donation: “National Review was launched in 1955 – the year of my birth. It has a special place in my heart.” Gosh I wish I could give you a kiss, you have no idea how much these sentiments mean to us.
  • John from Maryland finds $100 and sends it our way, along with a mix of facts and sentiments that bring a smile to the institutional face: “Been a magazine subscriber since ’79; I breathe National Review. Stick it to the Mann; with a curved bladed hockey stick.” High sticking?
  • Last but not least, Timothy from somewhere out there also donates Ben Franklin and shares with us why he is of sound mind: “Keep going strong. You guys keep me sane every day as I’m able to read you material and realize I’m not the only one to recognize that this whole damn woke leftist world is descending into bizarre authoritarian craziness.”

Folks, do understand that our needs are broad. As for our legal fight, well, God help us all – and we do mean all – if how we write is colored by the likes of the antagonist behind Mann v. National Review. Especially if you’ve never done so before, please contribute. Do it for free speech. Donate here. If you prefer to send a check, make one payable to “National Review” and mail it to National Review, ATTN: 2019 Fall Webathon, 19 West 44th Street, Suite 1701, New York, NY 10036. Know that our appreciation will be real and lasting.


P.S.: Your generous contribution supports the journalism, commentary, and opinion writing published in National Review magazine and on National Review Online. If you prefer to send a check, please mail it to National Review, ATTN: Fall 2019 Webathon, 19 West 44th Street, Suite 1701, New York, NY 10036.

Please note that contributions to National Review, Inc., while vitally important, are not tax deductible.

Members of the National Review editorial and operational teams are included under the umbrella “NR Staff.”

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