Patterico's Pontifications

9/9/2010

Pledge Drive

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 9:16 pm

As many of you know, I have been blogging since 2003. I don’t think I have ever asked for money for myself. Once I held a pledge drive for an LAPD officer who had been paralyzed by a gunshot wound from a criminal. I occasionally ask readers to mention the blog to friends. But I haven’t wanted to ask for money. I don’t blog for money. It’s always been a hobby. And frankly, I don’t want to feel like I owe anyone anything.

But here’s the problem. Ever since the 2008 election — for about two years now — I have been trying to find some solution for the blog that would keep it up during big links without breaking the bank. It has not been a cakewalk. At one point during the height of the presidential election, I was incessantly nagging my host to do something to stop the down time I kept getting during big links. He reacted by ordering me off his server within 72 hours. If I didn’t move my site, the blog would be dead. I had to desperately scramble to find someone to move my site and save the data, and the bill — well, let’s just say you would probably be shocked at the size of the bill. (My wife sure was!)

Since then, I have tried to find out what I can do to keep the site up and working — especially during big links. (The best posts often get the biggest links — which kill the site. Meaning the site often goes down when the best material is up — and I miss a chance to bring new people into this community.)

The answer always tends to be the same: if you want to keep the site up during big links, it’s going to cost more money.

So as much as I hate to, I have to ask for your help.

There are shiny PayPal buttons over there on the right. I’d appreciate any help you can give.

This is important: if you’re going to use a PayPal account funded by cash, you can use the top button. That is best because I get every cent. If you are going to make a one-time payment that is funded in any way by a credit card, you have to use the second button. PayPal takes a small amount off the top, but that’s the nature of the beast. I can’t accept credit card donations made using the top button.

And I want to point out that third button, which is my favorite. It is a subscription button, which allows you to set up a recurring monthly payment of $9, which I am calling a “subscription.” I’ll take any donation, but I’d really encourage people to “subscribe,” as that would give me some idea of the resources available to me on a monthly basis that I could hopefully use to keep the site up through an Instapundit link, just once! A couple of you have already become “subscribers” without my mentioning it, and I really appreciate it. (I can also accept recurring payments funded by credit card at the third button.)

What are the benefits of being a subscriber? To be honest, I’m not sure yet. I’ll take suggestions. Maybe I could do the occasional e-mail with thoughts I don’t want to share with the general public? I have no idea. Right now, you’ll just have to be content with the satisfaction of helping out the blog.

The great thing about this blog — the thing that keeps me going even when work is crushing and help is scarce — is the community of readers. The commenters here are the greatest on the Internet. Period. Also, I am occasionally reminded that there is a wonderful group of readers out there who rarely if ever comment. I was thrilled to “meet” many of you recently when I asked for commentary from the “lurkers.” I have met many of you in person in the past, in various places across the country, and hope to meet many more in the future.

There’s no reason that this site should be the only one on the Internet that always goes down when there is a big link. The other sites that constantly ask for donations never seem to go down. I don’t want to be one of those bloggers who asks you for donations constantly. (Hit my tip jar! Hit my tip jar!) But I know we ought to be able to do at least as well as those other sites.

Again: thanks for any help you can give to the site. Let’s show the other sites who’s boss.

UPDATE: Thanks to Glenn Reynolds for the link. And the donation.

Federal Judge: Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Unconstitutional

Filed under: Dog Trainer,General — Patterico @ 7:16 pm

As with Prop. 8, I oppose the policy but can’t imagine the decision is legally correct.

The L.A. Times has more here.

UPDATE: That L.A. Times blog entry has the following dubious claim:

Despite Obama’s criticism of the policy, the Justice Department vigorously defended “don’t ask, don’t tell’’ and even tried to undercut the case with a technical legal challenge over whether the named plaintiffs were dues-paying members of the organization that filed the lawsuit: the Log Cabin Republicans.

Mmmmm, re the supposedly vigorous defending, not so much. The paper’s news article does a better job of explaining what the decision made clear: DoJ rolled over on this one.

The sole evidence presented by the Justice Department was the legislative history of the ban, which federal government lawyers argued showed the policy was properly adopted by Congress though a deliberative and reasoned political process. No witnesses were called.

Vigorous!

PSA from Bradley Fikes, on Having a Heart Attack

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:08 pm

Our own Bradley Fikes had a heart attack recently. I asked him if he wanted me to say anything about it on the blog. He said it was OK to mention it, and sent some words of caution via e-mail:

The main point to stress is that if someone has a pain that won’t go away in the chest and/or left arm, (or certain other symptoms), call 911 immediately. Heart attacks can be hard to spot, because the pain may not occur in the chest — I was fooled by having no pain there –but the left arm should have been a giveaway. If it’s not a heart attack, you still need the pain treated. And if it is a heart attack, prompt attention works wonders. Moreover, I’d been feeling perpetually exhausted for the last week or so, a sign I should have gone for a checkup. I’d been blaming it on being out of shape, it is so easy to rationalize things.

I made a big mistake by waiting so long — the entire weekend — and only went in when the pain was intolerable and wouldn’t go away. Things could have been far worse. What may have helped is that I had been taking aspirin. And in fact, taking aspirin while waiting for the ambulance is recommended.

It turns out that I had a moderate heart attack, in which blood vessels were partially occluded, so the damage was much less than it would otherwise have been. And to make sure of that, I’ve been very extensively tested.

(more…)

Sarah Palin Endorses Christine O’Donnell

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 6:38 pm

The audio is here. Palin says O’Donnell is the conservative in the race.

In our last thread about O’Donnell vs. Castle, commenter Dustin pointed to this audio of O’Donnell being interviewed by a radio host who had endorsed her in a past race, but had some tough questions for her that she mostly dodged. The story is old — I remember reading about it a little while back — but the audio is worth listening to.

This isn’t just a race about the conservative who would probably lose vs. the squish who would probably win. It’s also about a conservative who, while easy on the eyes, has a tough time answering what seem like pretty straightforward questions.

The Big Upcoming Koran Burning; UPDATE: Or Not

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:34 am

It’s a matter of religious freedom that it can be done — but it should not be done because it unnecessarily provokes a large number of people for no particular good reason.

Sound familiar?

P.S. Sarah Palin agrees, so I must be right.

UPDATE: So apparently the burning is off, because they’re going to move the Ground Zero mosque. Except that they’re not going to move the Ground Zero mosque, and the burning isn’t really off because if church x doesn’t do it, church y will pick up the slack. Allahpundit follows the twists and turns so I don’t have to.

More on the L.A. Times’s Distortion of Obama’s Judicial Confirmation Statistics

Filed under: Dog Trainer,General,Judiciary — Patterico @ 7:28 am

I e-mailed Ed Whelan my post on the L.A. Times‘s distortion of statistics on judicial confirmation rates. Whelan followed up, and now provides evidence that Carol J. Williams, a reporter who once so badly botched an analysis of a court decision that the paper ran a four-paragraph correction, screwed the pooch again in her recent article where she said:

Obama’s judicial confirmation rate is the lowest since analysts began detailed tracking the subject 30 years ago, with 47% of his 85 nominations winning Senate approval so far. That compares with 87% confirmed during the first 18 months of the previous administration, 84% for President Clinton, 79% for President George H.W. Bush and 93% for President Reagan.

Let me turn the bullhorn over to Whelan:

The article’s assertion that President George W. Bush had 87% of his early judicial nominees “confirmed during the first 18 months of [his] administration” struck me as farfetched. And it turns out that it is wildly wrong. Specifically (by my quick count, which may not be perfect but should be very close), President Bush nominated some 112 judges during his first 18 months (32 to the courts of appeals and 80 to the district courts), and 64 of these (13* to the courts of appeals and 51 to the district courts) were confirmed during the first 18 months of his administration. That yields an overall figure of 57%, not 87% (and the figure for the courts of appeals was just under 41%).

I think we’ve reached the point where an e-mail to the Readers’ Representative is called for. Who wants to handle it? readers.representative@latimes.com. If you send anything, copy me.


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