A Time for Choosing

Update: More Info Added Here

There’s this discussion we on the right have from time to time. You’ve had it, I’ve had it. We talk about how the left gets things done that we don’t. They have more traffic. They have more funding. They do it better. The right, we say, does it wrong.

We have litany of reasons … bad use of tech by the party proper, failure to fund by the orgs on our side. Our side is full of people with real jobs. The list goes on, and the discussion eventually and inevitably sputters out unresolved.

Here’s a question. How many left-bloggers were part of the media stampede to Alaska to dig dirt on Palin? And how many right bloggers were investigating Obama in Chicago? Just think about that.

How about the stream of photos, videos, and muckraking from the funded lefty outfits like Talking Points Memo and Firedoglake? They have an avenue straight up to MSNBC and out to the rest of the MSM, and they’ve got backers, money and full time staff to do it. The left has an army online, whereas the right has a largely unfunded militia.

I know that many on the right have written proposals and reached out to our grassroots organizations for funding. We’ve even managed to produce a few startups, although we seem to have a problem with only funding ideas that hearken to traditional media. What we don’t have is the exact thing we need: some funded independent bloggers.

Independent bloggers find and push stories. They investigate the other side in a way the liberal press never would. Independent bloggers can push memes. They have the time to navigate the waters of all the social networking, sharing, and bookmarking sites. They correct bias in wikipedia. They comb lefty blogs for memes to stop. The funded independent blogger is vital to a successful right online, but they are rare, few and far between.

I’ve been blogging and writing online for many years. You guys know me at Redstate pretty well. I do a decent impression of an independent blogger, but that time may soon be at an end. I’m missing that one thing: funding. For a variety of unfortunate reasons what meager funding I’ve managed to scrounge has at last, and spectacularly, run dry. But I don’t want to stop what I’m doing. I thought about looking for a paid blogging position (as if they even exist, right?) or maybe looking to traditional media. But today, a very important end of the line day for me, something occurred to me. Maybe the big guys are never going to catch on to what the right needs online until and unless we can prove it. And what better way to do so than by fundraising my way to independence?

So that’s what I’ve decided to do. I know everyone would like to be an independent blogger, and if we can establish the idea I’m sure more can. But today I’m asking for you to choose to support me. Small donors, as we’ve all learned in the last few years, can make a big difference. And just a few independent bloggers that have a megaphone and the variety of skills needed can make a huge difference with the help of those donors. So please, if you agree, just click below to donate.

With the first round of funding (he says full of hope) I’ll be setting up a standalone blog. I’ll post my Redstate and AOL News articles there, as well as independent stories, as well as all my youtube content. Any 50 dollar donations (he says full of wild hope) will be memorialized on the home page of the new blog in a photoshop fake.

As an independent blogger, I’d not only try to catch Democrats behaving badly (as I did with Fowler) highlight the left on their turf (as I did at the DNC), but I’d also cover protests (which I’ve already been arrested for once), travel to the scene of the story, including abroad, and generally speaking: answer back. I’ll check wikipedia for accuracy, take note of trends as they develop and let you know. I’ll be an agent of, by and for the person Redstate epitomizes: a conservative online activist. We need this. And yes, I realize we need about 40 more of me, but I can only do one thing at a time. (Ahem: MoeLane.com … if you ever buy anything at Amazon without going through Moe Lane, then a pox upon you!)

The right always talks about taking advantage of tech. But tech on its own is just a machine. We need more advocates out there fighting every day. That’s what I plan to do. That’s my role. The fruits of those labors will mostly go to Redstate, but will also hit my new stand-alone, and reach outside the typical blogosphere through PoliticsDaily.com, where we have a huge audience.

So that’s the story. I hope you’ll embark on an adventure with me.

– Caleb Howe
formerly absentee