Morning Rant

Kevin Holtsberry passed this one along to me and a lot of other people. I don’t know if I’m supposed to laugh or bust a blood vessel.

Mostly I’m just confused as hell.


“What started out as a political call-to-arms has become a very serious venture with income and overheads and money-making strategies – war blogging.”

No, really. Read it again. Bloggers are war profiteers.

First, ain’t nothin’ wrong with makin’ money. Even (gasp!) during war. That is, in fact, one of the reasons democracies are so goddamn good at waging war. Thanks to the profit motive, we can build more tanks, ships, guns, bullets, anything than the other guys.

But bloggers making money?

Kids, Andrew Sullivan broke even this winter — after 18 months. Thanks to his celebrity as former editor of TNR, he had a built-in base he was able to grow on. And that fact that he’s made a few grand is kinda cool.

Let’s call Andrew our First-Tier Blogger.

In the Second Tier we have notable amateurs such as Glenn Reynolds. The Prof gets a few tens of thousands of people each day, but has never charged any of them. He has a tip jar — but didn’t put it up until October. He claims to have made enough money for a late model laptop, so that he might blog at the coffee shop, too.

In the three months that I’ve been at this, I’ve been able to join the Third Tier. We get a couple thousand hits a day — more when a Lileks, Prof, of Sullivan takes note. The Sarge and Asparagirl are in this group.

I don’t know how much money Stryker or Brooke have pulled in, but I do know that I don’t have any sort of tip jar on my site. For three months now, I spend 14 hours (on and off) every weekday at this machine, blogging.


Now, let’s pretend for a moment that I had Glenn’s hits. Let’s also pretend that I had his tip jar. So, in this pretend world, I’ve made a couple grand in donations. Completely voluntary payments for a completely voluntary service.

Three months — call it 60 workdays. Let’s lowball and say I worked eight hours each day. That’s 480 hours. Now, let’s divide my hours into that imaginary two grand. We get a total of $4.16/hour.

I can goddamn promise you my time is worth more than four bucks an hour — and so is Sarge’s and so is Brooke’s, and Glenn’s and everyone else around here.

This is a labor of love. We do it when and how and as we want. And we’ll stop when we’re bored.

And I resent the hell out of anyone who claims otherwise.

UPDATE: My poor memory confused Sullivan’s weekly readership for his daily hits. So I wrote as if his hits were almost an order of magnitude greater than Reynolds’ — when, in fact, their numbers are very similar. Oops, right?

So let’s put Glenn in the first tier, and give everyone else an extra stripe, too. Promotions for everyone!


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