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Why are you donating — or not donating?

I’ve gotta just come right out and say it. The fundraiser had a boffo, whopping, wonderful, encouraging first three days. Since then … it’s had a few great moments.

Individual donations have been unusually generous and for that, I bless you. But broad support is nil, even though readership is as strong as ever.

Of the last nine days, eight seven have brought in $0 — zero, nada, nothing (fortunately, one active day raised $316 in three generous donations, but that’s still not sufficient to sustain progress).

We’ve stalled.

This is unusual. I’ve only had two other fundraisers, but they’ve been wildly wonderful.

One factor is that a number of longtime contributors, including a few whose past donations have been large, aren’t in a position to give this year. Legal troubles, investments gone south, unemployment, divorce, and serious illness … you name it, some of my dearest blogfriends have suffered it.

But that doesn’t explain why there’ve been fewer than 30 donors out of the roughly one thousand who visit every day.

So what about you?

Those who’ve donated, please tell the world why you did.

Those who haven’t donated and don’t plan to, please tell me why you haven’t and what could move you to make a contribution?

As one of the big supporters reminded me, “Either you have the time to keep this blog/cabal going or you have to use your time putting bacon on the table for you & Ava some other way.” And that’s the truth.

Now I know it’s likely that, towards the end, a few angels will come to the rescue. There’s already one waiting in the wings. But that angel is matching your donations. His generosity increases only as your support increases.

It hurts my heart that three or four individuals should bear such a large share of the burden. I’m glad they’re willing and able. But there’s got to be broader support or what’s the point?

So tell me, please — what’s up? And what can I do to earn your support?


  1. Comrade X
    Comrade X May 17, 2018 9:36 am

    IMHO Claire you have already earned our support by what you do or we wouldn’t be here.

    Now it is up to us, those that appreciate what you do to show that support.

    I don’t mind paying a just price for what I receive in life.

    For those who have not given and are reading this blog, you do know it takes time for Claire to put this all together, I want her to continue to contribute that time but as that quote she mentioned says it’s an either or on keeping that bacon coming, either she can do it with the blog or there will have to be somewhere or somehow else where her time is spent getting Ava her bacon.

    Come on for Ava lets give a little!! And for Claire too why you are at it!

  2. brew
    brew May 17, 2018 9:43 am

    As someone who donated I did so for a variety of reasons…

    I feel I get a lot of value for my money….

    Call it education & entertainment – there’s a lot of good stuff that comes from the frequent blog ‘links’ postings. Some of it being activism, some news you can use, and nearly always something light hearted enough to bring a smile.

    It supports Claire, and thus the great Cause that brought us here in the first place. Long Live Freedom!

    Finally, it seems to me to be the right thing to do. Why should I get all this for free?

    C’mon folks – Claire busts her tail to make this all possible for us… surely you can find *some* money to donate??

  3. Claire
    Claire May 17, 2018 10:32 am


    I don’t expect a money donation from you. You and Bill St. Clair already give your time keeping this blog and the Cabal going with your tech skills. You’ve both jumped to the rescue many times when I or a reader needed help.

  4. Claire
    Claire May 17, 2018 10:34 am

    brew — Kindly, enthusiastically spoken! Your contribution was very generous AND you’ve also made terrific contributions in kind over at Claire’s Cabal with your tales of kitchen and suburban homestead.

  5. Claire
    Claire May 17, 2018 10:36 am

    And Comrade X, you are the reigning king of the fundraiser. But more; you’re a man of valuable experience in the political world who has a lot to teach — and knows how to laugh at it all, besides. You, too, enlighten both the blog Commentariat and the Cabal.

  6. Claire
    Claire May 17, 2018 10:51 am

    And thank you, JB, for heating up the thermostat and moving us beyond the halfway point!

  7. coloradohermit
    coloradohermit May 17, 2018 12:20 pm

    I think that telling us that a wonderful generous reader would match contributions took the urgency off of some folks. I love coming here and seeing what Claire is up to and what news tidbits might catch my imagination. It’s well worth a contribution to make sure that it’ll continue to be here for our education and enjoyment. Come on folks! Rally up!

  8. Claire
    Claire May 17, 2018 12:35 pm

    “I think that telling us that a wonderful generous reader would match contributions took the urgency off of some folks.”

    I was thinking it would inspire them. With a few people, I know it did; they said so. But you’re right that others probably decided some other guy had everything covered; I saw evidence of that, too.

    Thank you, coloradohermit, for being one of those who’s always quietly there to help out.

  9. strycat
    strycat May 17, 2018 12:55 pm

    I’m still reeling from taxes and we’re not done with them yet. Federal tax in April, State tax in May, and 1st half Real Estate Taxes in June, not to mention quarterly taxes.

  10. Thomas L. Knapp
    Thomas L. Knapp May 17, 2018 1:33 pm

    I just sent a little (not nearly as much as I’d like to have). Sorry it wasn’t sooner, I’ve been traveling and just now noticed!

  11. Claire
    Claire May 17, 2018 2:02 pm

    Ouch, strycat. I understand — and sympathize.

  12. Claire
    Claire May 17, 2018 2:04 pm

    Thank you, Tom. But if you forgot anything, it’s that you were actually among the first to donate. Email sent.

  13. Thomas L. Knapp
    Thomas L. Knapp May 17, 2018 2:18 pm

    Well, I’d rather donate twice than forget to donate entirely. I must be getting old.

    I know some people here are not religious/mystical, and really don’t consider myself ESPECIALLY so. But I do believe in karma and the whole “cast your bread on the waters and it will return to you” thing.

    Like Claire, I rely mainly on donors who like my work. The mail arrived a few minutes ago, with a donation several times the size I made to Claire. So to the extent that I believe in signs, I consider that one 🙂

  14. Jorge
    Jorge May 17, 2018 3:14 pm

    I donated despite being rather tight at the moment. For almost exactly the same reasons brew did. I have been getting a lot of value from Claire’s writing for two decades. I buy the books, but the blog and the Cabal (yeah I know, I am not exactly active) provide their own value and need support to continue.

    Initially I was going to put off the donation for a couple of months, until things improve financially (they will), but given the matching contribution figured it best to give what I can now.

    If things improve before the end of May I intend to make another donation.

  15. Black Ort
    Black Ort May 17, 2018 4:01 pm

    I had been waiting for the fundraiser and sent what I had saved specifically for Claire.
    Even if she wrote and posted about causes I did not care for I would be here reading daily.

    This blog is one of “Me Time” treats, a diversion from work at the pc instead.
    Those regular readers that are not putting in should wake up and cough up the pennies a day I am sure many could spare.

    Matching funds do not work if you don’t put in your half, is the math really that hard?
    I am admittedly a lazy Freedomista in that I care but don’t get much done, but I can support with a bit of cash.

  16. ~Qjay
    ~Qjay May 17, 2018 5:25 pm

    I usually buy stuff from bloggers I like, but don’t donate. I don’t even donate to charities or sites I use that accept donations though I do commit time, skills, recruits, and resources.
    Your online and BHM content is why I buy your books though, and why I would like to see newer versions of some of the old ones. THAT is an awesome income production scam most authors should use every few years; “New for 2018, The Freedom Outlaw Guide! Updated for new European privacy guidelines on social media!” Or whatever the buzzword is that year.
    You are one of the few blogs I follow, and visit weekly, but I don’t have money enough to pay my own bills anymore. The Great NorthWET has gotten very expensive. It’s gotten so painful I’m trying to move away. I’ll miss it, but not very much, not anymore; it isn’t the place I grew up.

  17. kentmcmanigal
    kentmcmanigal May 17, 2018 5:40 pm

    I am planning to donate, but my own money troubles are delaying my donation. Still, I plan to do it one way or another.

  18. Claire
    Claire May 17, 2018 6:31 pm

    Thank you, ~Qjay. That’s reasonable. Revising books every couple of years is hellacious work, though big self-promoters can make it pay off for them. I’m not one of those. I am trying to revise a couple old books, but so much goes obsolete so quickly these days it’s not going easily.

    (And sorry you’re being driven out of the PNW.)

  19. Claire
    Claire May 17, 2018 6:34 pm

    Kent — Thank you. I know you’re not exactly rolling in dough, so I appreciate you thinking of me. If you can’t, you can’t.

    My questions are more for those who can but choose not to help keep the blog going. I’d like to know what I can do to earn their support.

  20. Claire
    Claire May 17, 2018 6:35 pm

    Black Ort — Well said. I blush.

    “Matching funds do not work if you don’t put in your half, is the math really that hard?”

    And I hope more people will think about that part.

  21. Claire
    Claire May 17, 2018 6:37 pm

    “If things improve before the end of May I intend to make another donation.”

    And if things don’t, you can know you already gave a very generous donation that will be doubled in June. I knew (because of your posts about it) that Costa Rica was in potential financial trouble. I didn’t know that you were. I hope things turn around for you.

  22. Skytrooper
    Skytrooper May 17, 2018 8:31 pm

    I want to donate but don’t want to create a PayPal account. I routinely use a credit card to purchase stuff online by PayPal. When I try to donate using your PayPal link, I’m required to enter PayPal account info; there’s no option to use a credit card. I’ve tried multiple browsers with JavaScript enabled and ad blockers turned off, but no luck.

  23. Claire
    Claire May 17, 2018 9:02 pm

    Darnit, Skytrooper, you’re right. That link is asking for a PayPal account. I don’t think it used to do that. I apologize and I’ll look into that further.

    There is an option for a snail-mail payment. If you’re interested in that, let me know.

  24. ~Qjay
    ~Qjay May 17, 2018 11:09 pm

    There used to be an “Amazon Honor System” or something similar where you could send cash directly to someone without it being counted as a purchase or earnings.

    Is it still around? Does Patreon allow one time donations to be counted for this?

    What about an E- fax number so we can send a picture of a check or money order electronically and you can just cash it, if anyone does that sort of thing anymore. Some would be watermarked and wouldn’t work, but many others should be just fine.

    There’s also Venmo, Google Pay, and Zelle for direct cashless transfers. Even Western Union, MoneyGram, or postal money order.

  25. John
    John May 17, 2018 11:55 pm

    I try and support and sustain those persons and things that I care about. I want to keep them around. Such usually have good survivability almost unsupported or maintained. Now and then a little enthusiastic deference can matter a lot…

  26. Claire
    Claire May 18, 2018 6:20 am

    “I try and support and sustain those persons and things that I care about.”

    And you succeed! In style.

  27. Claire
    Claire May 18, 2018 9:26 am

    Correction to original post: Of the last nine days, seven (not eight as I originally wrote) were zero $ days. And much credit to the donors; those were good days.

    I have found this fundraiser frustrating. But at the same time, I have always been blessed to have wonderful readers who contribute both as Commentariat members and as donors.

  28. fred
    fred May 18, 2018 9:28 am

    Thomas L. Knapp May 17, 2018 2:18 pm
    I know some people here are not religious/mystical, and really don’t consider myself ESPECIALLY so. But I do believe in karma and the whole “cast your bread on the waters and it will return to you” thing.
    Me too,and it has in my life.Ridiculously so in my experience,good stuff!

    5 or 10 bucks adds up,if you can possibly afford that,then donate.If you cant,I hope things get better for you,times can be rough,understandable.BTDT.

    Yes,maybe mentioning the matching funds hurt.I took it as ,Yahoo!!! Its going to be 10G rather than 5G,sign me up!! I can see others saying…hmmm….goal is met.

    What I like here is being able to comment and not having to read hateful comments from trolls or just unhappy people,I dont need that in my life,at all.Lots of mutual mature respect here,very refreshing,its my morning go to.Sure worth the little I can give,a whale Im not,LOL! But bless the whales,they rock!

  29. Pat
    Pat May 18, 2018 10:21 am

    fred said: “What I like here is being able to comment and not having to read hateful comments from trolls or just unhappy people,I dont need that in my life,at all.”

    Absolutely. In addition to the interesting and amusing links that Claire supplies, I often get info and a new perspective from commenters as well as from Claire. It’s a relief to not hear put-downs and political bias, but thoughtful analysis and opinion on any subject.

  30. UnReconstructed
    UnReconstructed May 18, 2018 10:47 am

    I’ve been a loyal reader for many years now. Every day that I can, I check in here, and almost always come away better than I arrived. Cogent observations, Interesting viewpoints and occasionally a total surprise.

    Times have been tough lately, there’s a lot of that going around. But I just got a check from a client, and I’m not so broke that I cannot toss some coin in the pot.

    I generally read this blog around my second cup o coffee in the morning, so its sorta like ‘a cup w an old friend’ before I begin my daily rounds…..

    Thanks Claire, for the morning company…..


  31. Claire
    Claire May 18, 2018 1:58 pm

    “Thanks Claire, for the morning company…..”

    And thank you unReconstructed, for gifts past and present — gifts to dogs, as well as humans.

  32. Claire
    Claire May 18, 2018 2:01 pm

    “… but thoughtful analysis and opinion on any subject.”

    And sass and sarcasm. And corrections from smart people when I get something wrong.

    Pat, I agree that the Commentariat is one of the best features of the blog. I can barely even stand to read a lot of comment sections around the Web. Ugh. The Living Freedom Commentariat, OTOH, offers hope that human intelligence and decency will survive the pressures of the 21st century.

  33. firstdouglas
    firstdouglas May 19, 2018 11:15 am

    I find myself sharing the outlook of many who have already spoken here. Especially, this is such a nice place to come about the time of my second cup of coffee (though I’m pretty much down to one of those now, daily). Between your contributions, Claire, and those of readers, I am regularly learning something new or useful here. And what differences in perspective can come to light here, even given our generally shared respect for individual rights. These found differences may be the best part of a visit here for me, since readers here are intelligent and courteous, for goodness sake.

    And contribute-not contribute? There’s the money thing, where we each have to decide if we have it to send, or not. But there is also a certain level of inertia here which must be broken through, since making a contribution to this site isn’t quite as easy as typing in a credit card number. And maybe the inertia factor has more to do with the small number of donors than does capacity to contribute.

    And the thought struck me that a site creator might be somewhat disenheartened on seeing so few moved to action, out of such a much larger readership. So I am suggesting myriad $1 and $5 donations in order that we show Claire a little breadth, to go with the depth of her “usuals,” even if it means troubling to purchase such a small money order.

  34. fred
    fred May 19, 2018 11:27 am

    Nice thoughts firstdouglas. For us folks that can stand paypal its super easy to do.
    With my politics I would think paypal is another devil,I dont,guess I dont have an issue as i dont think they are trying to take over the world at others expense like some companies are doing.

  35. firstdouglas
    firstdouglas May 19, 2018 2:25 pm

    Well, agreed, fred, paypal really is pretty easy to use ..if only I didn’t want paypal to die, so a decent service could take its place. I just won’t abide paypal’s stopping money transfers intended for wikileaks and numerous others, politically disfavored.

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