Wednesday :: Jun 27, 2007

Dear Dr. Dean, Our Bloggers Need Help

by paradox

Hi, sir, I know you still haven’t got back to me about why Bush won’t be impeached or any possible efforts to improve the Democratic brand, but Mike Stark brought up such an important topic last night at The Daily Kos I feel it demands your immediate full attention: our blogging community is hurting in its fifth year from altruistic conditions and needs immediate help and investment.

One of the reasons liberal and democratic blogs barely limp along on amazingly little money is that their true talents, functions and values are vastly undervalued by the Democratic Party, and their effect on the political dynamic is so new what they contribute is not nearly appreciated enough. I’m quite sure, Dr. Dean, you have an immediate sense of who bloggers are and what they do, and I’m also quite sure it’s very insufficient, no disrespect an’ all.

Put aside for a moment the hurled projections from whiny ass titty baby journalists who can’t handle the heat of exposure and criticism, stuttering in their indignation as they marginalize bloggers as radicals in pajamas. I know you’ve done that, sir, and probably think of bloggers as very bright writers, good American patriots, handy for cash at election time. Well, yes, writing is the first skill bloggers implement, but only the first in a long list.

Bloggers are writers, editors, organizers, fundraisers, photojournalists, critics, publishers and most crucial of all, gatekeepers. The best and the brightest set the flow and the tone to the liberal response to immediate politics every day whether they know it or not, Duncan Black currently the master at this skill in the liberal blogging community.

Gatekeeping is not a dictated one-way street of communication, not hardly, but rather a fine subtle art of perceiving what the community and audience knows to be important and relevant and reflecting that in the stories chosen for publication, which the community then rewards by paying attention. Knowing what the liberal community sees as the Democratic agenda and proper behavior has enormous value, obviously.

Speaking of value, Americans are known to invest a lot of it in money, Dr. Dean, for perfectly valid reasons, it’s totally necessary in this world, and I’ve noticed that the many tens millions of dollars directly raised by bloggers wasn’t ever turned down by campaigns or the party. Why then are our bloggers totally unpaid, Jesus, and live on peanuts when they bring in so many millions? How is it wise to allow such a valuable fundraising source to possibly wither because bloggers can’t eat and pay the server bill?

I don’t like focusing solely on money, sir, the other skills and gifts listed above given freely to the liberal and Democratic community are priceless treasures I’ll never stop being grateful for, but making good monetary investments that are crucial to an organization’s health are easy to get approval for and makes good Vermont sense, eh?

What’s ethically wrong with the Democratic Party paying liberal bloggers a stipend every month as long as they continue to blog? Nothing, not that I can see. 100 bloggers paid $3,000 a month is $3,600,000 a year, total chump change.

$3000 a month isn’t a gift, it’s a stipend of enormous gratitude so a blogger can inspire, organize, create, and yes continue bring in cash to the liberal and Democratic community, I just don’t see $36,000 a year as some kind of enormous payoff of prestige in America. It’s so our people can survive without worrying and not take a job if they choose to. So many of our people work when they really want to be blogging, just imagine what we’d see if our bloggers were no longer mentally or time constrained from having to work.

Some chosen will keep their jobs, whether it’s as a successful publisher like Markos or in the private sector, and they all still get the stipend; when they give up blogging the stipend stops.

Selecting the first 100 will be difficult with some fights, but I’d envision 36 months of altruistic liberal blogging five times a week would be the initial threshold, with a committee of bloggers and party members to decide on the exceptions, both negative and positive. After everything settles down the problems of progression will be accepted, and a waiting list is a decent idea, so some left out will eventually get the stipend. One day the original 100 will be gone from the list forever.

These 100 dazzling humans, who chose politics as their avenue in the brand new horizon of the internet, are very special people. They strode out forcefully so well into the new medium not because it was a fresh chance, but because the internet gave them the opportunity to be Americans they were always supposed to be.

Very happily for all of us that just so happens to meld critically with the future of the Democratic Party, but it can’t last forever if these precious liberals are neglected. It would be an error of historical proportions to let the liberal Democratic blogging community wither or be stunted, Dr. Dean, and I hope the obvious benefits and dire needs of our bloggers compels the Party to act quickly on this urgent matter.

paradox :: 6:54 PM :: Comments (9) :: Digg It!