Why Consortiumnews Depends on Its Readers

From Editor Robert Parry: When I started Consortiumnews 21 years ago, I had hoped to secure significant financing from a variety of wealthy people in support of truly independent journalism. But what I discovered was that most of these potential funders didn’t really want independent journalism. They wanted stories that would support their causes or candidates – and that was something that defeated the very idea of what we were trying to do.

So, Consortiumnews has been kept alive by mostly small donors who appreciate the fact that we pursue information as we see it – without fear or favor – even when our findings are sometimes inconvenient to a particular partisan or ideological interest. I thank you for understanding what many of the richer folks didn’t – that democracy requires journalists acting as honest brokers.

As we enter today’s “Trump era,” we promise to apply the same standards to hold the new administration accountable. During the campaign, we pointed out areas of serious concern and some areas of hope, but we will not prejudge anything.

We will be your eyes and ears inside Washington now as we have been for more than two decades. That’s why our end-of-year fund drive is so important. We have set a modest goal of $60,000 and are now about three-quarters of the way there. Reaching our goal will let us budget for the kind of aggressive coverage that you have come to expect from Consortiumnews.

You can donate by credit card online (we accept Visa, Mastercard, American Express and Discover), by PayPal (our PayPal account is named after our original email address, “[email protected]”), or by mailing a check to Consortium for Independent Journalism (CIJ); 2200 Wilson Blvd., Suite 102-231; Arlington VA 22201.

We also are registered with PayPal’s Giving Fund under the name Consortium for Independent Journalism. And, since we are a 501-c-3 non-profit, donations by American taxpayers may be tax-deductible.

And, we are offering a special thank-you gift for those who can give $125 or more – or if you set up a recurring monthly donation by credit card or PayPal.

You can receive a Consortiumnews’ tote bag and a signed copy of any one of my six books — Fooling America, Trick or Treason, Lost History, Secrecy & Privilege, Neck Deep, or America’s Stolen Narrative. After making your donation simply send an email to [email protected] and tell us which one of the six books you would like included in your tote bag. (Or you can send us a note by snail mail to the above mailing address.)

As always, thank you for your support.

Robert Parry

Robert Parry is a longtime investigative reporter who broke many of the Iran-Contra stories for the Associated Press and Newsweek in the 1980s. He founded Consortiumnews.com in 1995 to create an outlet for well-reported journalism that was being squeezed out of an increasingly trivialized U.S. news media.

2 comments for “Why Consortiumnews Depends on Its Readers

  1. pmcall
    December 27, 2016 at 22:51

    Thank you for the great journalism. I’m very happy to make a donation to support your work and I will tweet this piece to encourage others to do so, as well.

  2. CitizenOne
    December 22, 2016 at 22:03

    Mr. Parry,
    You have been speaking truth to power for 21 years. Congratulations. Your analysis and insights have been a candle in the wind for so long that I think it is fair to say your candle is inextinguishable. The candle blowers have largely given up trying to blow out your candle. They can afford unfortunately to do so since your site has remained small as other sites which routinely spin stories toward the main stream media machine have grown by leaps and bounds.

    There is a tale to be told here. That is the tale of the truth teller everyone can afford to ignore. They can afford to ignore it because it turns out people are readily enticed by other sources to devour the “free” pablum which is reinforced by the major media players. It is a sad truth that people rarely want to challenge their own buy in to the group think. It is a leap which sets a bar too high for most people. It is because what most folks see and hear every day are widely divergent from the views on this website and they cannot accept the challenge to the group think presented by this site which forces people to at least examine an alternate narrative.

    Probably very few people are even astute enough to discern that your site is free from the ads and the click bait which populates so many other sources of news. They probably do not appreciate that in order to tell the truth you have to also refuse to accept the strings which come with allowing advertisers to populate your site with their advertisements.

    The principle most people fail to grasp is that if they want the news that is going to present them with the truth, they have to pay for that. If they are not paying for it then it will be news that is favorable to the views of others who do pay for it.

    I’m glad you are sticking to the principle of relying on individual contributors to pay for your product in order to preserve the interest of those individuals who are attracted to your site because it is not beholden to other interests.

    Mr. Parry,
    You have lived your life based on those principles and have quit jobs where there was no interest in telling the truth. You have sacrificed a career as a commercial journalist in order to pursue your passion and commitment to telling the truth. You have watched and chronicled the plight of other reporters who mistakenly thought the media establishments valued the truth and were betrayed and ultimately destroyed by their baseless faith that someone in the commercial sphere of main stream media would ultimately defend the truth.

    That will never happen. Today, the main stream media is a money machine. It promotes whatever it thinks will make it more money and eschews anything it thinks might threaten the bottom line. Truth has no place in that equation. In fact, morals, ethics, standards of journalism as taught in universities fly right out the window in today’s main stream media if it does not serve the bottom line.

    The internet has not helped much. People again turn to sources of free news so they don’t have to pay for what they read. I would ask these folks how they expect a “free” news source which gets its money from advertisers would be expected to provide truthful information any more than a billboard company which will put up any advertisement for any product as long as there is someone else willing to pay for what everyone else will see and be influenced by.

    Logically, every driver on the road gazing at billboards realizing they are just advertisements should also look at all of the “free” information plastered on the billboards of the information superhighway as nothing more than advertisements hawking the products others are paying for us to see.

    Unfortunately, most people today seem completely clueless that the “free” information they receive is mostly worthless and rarely is objective truth or fact. It can be seen in our collective acceptance of the wholesale replacement of actual news on main stream media with sensationalism, tabloid gossip, unsubstantiated opinions, useless infotainment which titillates us with the uncommon, bizarre and trivial nonsense which is of little or no consequence to our real world and thinking they are informed.

    They walk away with a soundbite thinking “I’m going to tell everyone about the BS I saw on TV this morning and get a conversation going about it and argue about it and become so completely immersed in BS that I don’t even know what is real news anymore”.

    We have become consumed with contrivances about the plight of a dolphin caught in a net or a rescue of a dog from an icy river or the heroics of a man that saved a babies life. It fills our brains with garbage and fails to tell us anything of importance like the devastation and horror of unnecessary wars or the destruction of the biosphere or the threats from white collar criminals fleecing millions of Americans or the real reasons political elections are rigged. It’s the Russians! You will never see or hear any story questioning the high price of pharmaceuticals or the damage it does to elderly folks on a fixed income. That is simply because the news is bought and paid for by the deluge of pharmaceutical products on every commercial news show. The main stream media simply can’t run any of those stories because there will be economic consequences for doing so, so they don’t.

    Fortunately there is an easy fix for all the BS. Simply donate money to this site so it can continue on its independent mission to uncover the really significant stuff we should all be informed about and be concerned about.

    In other words, if you want news that is meaningful to you and not someone else then you have to pay for it.

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