It's the Monday noontime thread for Reason's annual Webathon, in which we spend a full week reminding you of the value you receive at this here web & print & e-readery journalatastic juggernaut, and asking you to make whatever tax-deductible donation to our 501(c)(3) that you can muster, in exchange for a bunch of different types of swag. For the money you give us, we represent your views in far-flung corners of the mediasphere, make you snicker with pointlessly juvenile alt-text (I got in that "Newkular" bit, people, in case you haven't lived up to your promises), and give you the best damned journalism in the opinion-mag business.
Here's a pitch aimed squarely at our beloved D.C.-area readers, commenters, and frenemies (though we'll get to you non-Belttards soon, too): Give us money, because we gave you all that alcohol, for free.
For instance, just last Thursday! Here's a Politico story tied to Reason.com movie reviewer Kurt Loder, and his beer-soaked book party at Chez Reason:
He's moved on from MTV but not the news, steadily — but quietly — becoming an advocate for libertarianism. The 66-year-old Loder appeared Thursday at the Washington headquarters of Reason magazine to promote his new book of film reviews, "The Good, the Bad and the Godawful: 21st-Century Movie Reviews." […]
"Back in the 1970s, I was working for some paper in New Jersey, and this flier came across my desk and it said: 'Free Love and Free Markets.' And I just thought that was a great thing. It made sense to me. I'm drawn to the idea that people are allowed to do what they want without hurting other people. It's your body to do stuff with, and government should be fairly minimal."
Of the libertarian in the 2012 race, Ron Paul, Loder observes that the Texas congressman "says a lot of things that I agree with — the war on drugs, for instance." But Loder remains unsold on the GOP field.
"The people that the Republicans are putting forth are of questionable value," Loder said. "If the GOP is going to go with Newt Gingrich, that's a train wreck waiting to happen. I can't believe they'd be going in that direction. … This is a very difficult time which calls for someone with unusual abilities."
Whole thing here.
Of course, the Loder party was hardly the only memorable event, AND HARDLY THE ONLY FREE BOOZE, served up at Reason editorial HQ since we opened up shop here nearly five years ago. Who could forget our Christopher Hitchens Bah-Humbug Christmas of 2007?
We had Libertarian Party Nominee Bob Barr give a live shadow-debate with Barack Obama and John McCain, a presentation by the producers of the great documentary about Estonia The Singing Revolution, Reason Senior Editor Damon W. Root and a cast of legal eagles discussing Root's great cover story Conservatives v. Libertarians, a viewing party-slash panel discussion for John Stossel's "Bailouts & Bull" special on 20/20, and so, so much more.
Not only was all this live content free, SO WERE THE DRINKS.
You know who you are, D.C.-area bon vivants. You show up to our offices 20 minutes before the party starts, and you try to stay as many hours after closing time as we'll allow. You heckle us with awkward questions, you scarf our cheese plates, you "borrow" our books. WE LOVE YOU, TO DEATH, BUT THESE THINGS COST MONEY. So please consider donating, right the hell now.
Since I can hear the grumbling already from those parts of the country that aren't undergoing an economic boom, two reminders: 1) We turned those events into enjoyable content, didn't we? And 2) we took the show on the road this year, with Declaration of Independents-themed events (say, did you hear that Nick Gillespie and I wrote a book?), in Philadelphia, Charleston, Las Vegas, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, Boston, Oxford, Portland, and beyond.
So again, please donate, people. If "Free Minds and Free Markets" aren't free, just think about the free booze. We enjoy these interactions even more than you do, and we want to continue them deep into this very disappointing 21st century. Cheers!