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As many readers may already be aware, I originally launched this small webzine five years ago in the wake of my sudden and unexpected purge after eight years as publisher of The American Conservative:

Since TAC had been the primary venue for my own writings, I was faced with a major challenge, but a sudden insight changed this picture.

I realized that many other writers and columnists had also been purged from mainstream publications, and that these prominent victims could constitute the core contributors of an entirely new publication. Hence was born The Unz Review, entitled “An Alternative Media Selection” and bearing the descriptive subtitle “A Collection of Interesting, Important, and Controversial Perspectives Largely Excluded from the American Mainstream Media.”

Obviously alternative media websites had existed on the Internet from its earliest days, but nearly all of these had always been centered upon a particular ideological or political orientation. But The Unz Review was intended to include most of these frequently contradictory perspectives, hosting material both Left and Right, conspiratorial and racialist, fascistic and anarchistic, with very lightly moderated comment-threads.

Although many doubted that a webzine providing such varied and conflicting viewpoints would ever attract any significant audience, I do think that we have. Our steadily rising readership reached nearly three million monthly pageviews and 45,000 monthly comments in September and October. Moreover, this strong and steady growth has come despite our suffering some of the same “soft censorship,” especially upon Social Media, that has been inflicted upon most other alternative media websites, whether Left or Right, especially in the wake of Donald Trump’s unexpected election victory.

According to the Alexa.com estimates, many of these other popular webzines have lost half or more of their traffic-rankings since the January 2017 crackdown, while ours has increased by almost 50% during that same period. And our daily traffic surpassed that of TAC about one year ago, and has remained significantly ahead every month since that time. Here’s a comparison table of UNZ.com over the last couple of years with roughly forty mid-size, mostly alternative websites.

Alexa Traffic-RankingsRelative UNZ.com gain from…
WebsiteJan/16Jan/17Jan/18Nov/18Jan/16Jan/17Jan/18
UNZ.com46,98039,11933,56926,503
newrepublic.com10,20511,38315,51518,006+213+133+47
foreignpolicy.com8,3539,45712,57114,810+214+131+49
nakedcapitalism.com54,28251,16872,815100,316+228+189+74
marginalrevolution.com36,41155,42743,43340,621+98+8+18
lewrockwell.com23,54722,01940,94242,826+222+187+32
antiwar.com38,22341,60670,13461,960+187+120+12
theamericanconservative.com37,69334,09639,36330,982+46+34-0
counterpunch.org24,32719,14933,42242,641+211+229+62
thesaker.is76,10144,29555,24940,688-5+36-7
russia-insider.com18,56419,03137,46223,050+120+79-22
theduran.com33,07353,61671,114+217+68
veteranstoday.com24,37518,80241,42941,899+205+229+28
rense.com23,90116,86627,53551,978+285+355+139
voltairenet.org26,16417,94627,50922,964+56+89+6
mondoweiss.net50,02169,18882,564106,549+278+127+63
consortiumnews.com138,18768,99477,80898,353+26+110+60
moonofalabama.org166,73775,814103,93581,229-14+58-1
strategic-culture.org222,87572,432101,96565,006-48+32-19
globalresearch.ca10,28611,76223,75027,792+379+249+48
truthdig.com32,45525,07054,69544,212+141+160+2
opednews.com80,71379,623200,404253,143+456+369+60
ahtribune.com205,437153,977149,470233,252+101+124+98
dissidentvoice.org267,009247,586410,264254,496+69+52-21
whowhatwhy.org229,456183,844158,178182,414+41+46+46
paulcraigroberts.org42,95848,20164,01867,495+179+107+34
countercurrents.org121,937151,666215,165247,371+260+141+46
alternet.org4,6695,6589,17613,689+420+257+89
takimag.com43,48638,05253,33765,617+167+155+56
vdare.com98,12783,556106,954147,712+167+161+75
redice.tv61,84687,081143,680+243+109
amren.com93,25360,62674,32686,512+64+111+47
theoccidentalobserver.net214,917142,140177,970236,670+95+146+68
occidentaldissent.com275,588242,298118,862 149,654-4-9+59
counter-currents.com222,925111,370126,374118,054-6+56+18
therightstuff.biz102,74141,53939,50343,949-24+56+41
heartiste.wordpress.com54,41456,54373,22362,735+104+64+9
stormfront.org33,95421,45922,15247,969+150+230+174
voxday.blogspot.com95,89592,88460,54455,893+3-11+17
dailystormer.com/name40,25517,25817,284-24+48
sott.net18,97814,75518,00225,005+134+150+76

Less than two years ago, we were towards the lower end of the traffic rankings of these dozens of webzines, and now we are near the very top. For example, during this period our relative traffic ranking has grown by 229% over that of Counterpunch and 34% over that of TAC. Even more remarkably, our traffic has improved by 133% over the venerable and very mainstream New Republic, placing us at roughly two-thirds of the readership of that century-old publication.

Our stated role as a refuge for the purged and the persecuted has become an increasingly important one as other publications have become conforming to the ruling dictates of the Corporate Media, perhaps for fear that they would be branded “Russian Fake News.”

This unfortunate situation has been especially true of the late Alex Cockburn’s once fiercely iconoclastic Counterpunch, which has shown the door to many of its most popular writers, including Israel Shamir, Paul Craig Roberts, Mike Whitney, Diana Johnstone, Linh Dinh, and C.J. Hopkins, all of whom are now published here instead. As a likely consequence, Counterpunch‘s traffic-ranking has dropped by nearly 60% since the beginning of 2017, falling far behind our own rapidly growing readership numbers.

The obvious problem with offering ideological fare scarcely different than that of mainstream left-liberal publications such as HuffPost and Salon is that you are directly competing with HuffPost and Salon, and their vastly larger footprint assures them the lion’s share of the market.

It’s interesting to note that our considerable growth has occurred even as we have published articles at least as controversial as those of any of such other publications, and in many cases, much more so.

 

Just as my own 2013 purge launched this webzine, ongoing purges in the media are spurring its expansion, even into new forms of content.

For 17 years, Bonnie Faulkner’s hour-long Guns & Butter was one of the most popular and controversial shows airing on the leftwing Pacifica radio network, headquartered in Berkeley, California. And then just a few months ago, the show was suddenly cancelled and its complete archives scrubbed from the KPFA website, allegedly for its “controversial” content. Personally, I strongly suspect that Pacifica‘s severe financial problems may have allowed outside donors the necessary leverage to finally remove a long-standing thorn in their side.

Regardless, KPFA’s loss is our gain, and I’m very pleased to announce that Guns & Butter has now joined The Unz Review as our first podcast, with the website software having been extended to handle that additional form of content. This includes the hundreds of Guns & Butter shows aired since 2001, with hopes that some additional past shows will soon be located and added.

The most recent Guns & Butter podcast is available on the Home page and the sidebars of all other pages, as are the complete archives here:

http://www.unz.com/audio/channel/gunsbutter/

Just as with all other Archive pages, shows my be filtered by time period, such as the 22 shows that aired in 2016:

http://www.unz.com/audio/channel/gunsbutter/2016/

Shows may also be filtered by Guests, and here’s the link to the 21 shows featuring economist Michael Hudson:

http://www.unz.com/audio/channel/gunsbutter/guest/michael_hudson/

It was apparently the broadcast of portions of the “Deep Truth” conference in July that led to the sudden cancellation of Guns & Butter, and here’s one of those shows, which featured our own Philip Giraldi:

http://www.unz.com/audio/gunsbutter_zionism-deconstructing-the-power-paradigm-part-one-390/

With our software now able to effectively organize and present podcasts, we will consider adding additional ones in the near future.

 
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  1. I guess they don’t understand Ron (or maybe they do, even worse) but we love what you’re doing. You are performing the practical application of defending the right to be heard for even those with whom we disagree.

  2. anon[342] • Disclaimer says:

    Welcome to Guns and Butter! I’m not familiar with the podcast, but I do recall having read about it’s cancellation, again here on UR. I myself am a relatively new reader, but have been coming here multiple times daily since coming across one of your American Pravda pieces a few months ago.

    Speaking of media purges, maybe Marc Lamont Hill [1] wants to publish here.

    [1] https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/marc-lamont-hill-fired-cnn-after-his-speech-israel-draws-n942151

    P.S. I wish you would have addressed Wednesday’s outage.

    • Agree: Old Jew
    • Replies: @Old Jew
    , @Ron Unz
    , @eah
  3. anon[989] • Disclaimer says:

    Mr Unz, what about having a second tier of bloggers where the level of writing may not be as good as the rest of the content on here but the additional perspectives might prove interesting

    For example the blog “Wide Awake Gentile” seems to be written a Hindu in India who is angry about what he sees as a Jewish invasion and control of his country. Also he recently posted a nice article on the 1956 Hungarian Uprising:

    https://wideawakegentile.wordpress.com/2018/11/13/the-real-significance-of-the-1956-hungarian-revolution/

    What if you had about 20 of these kind of mid-level bloggers in a separate section and maybe they could work to improve their craft and eventually be elevated to the front page on Unz.com if warranted? Kind of like have different sections of a newspaper?

    • Replies: @Anon
  4. Anon[121] • Disclaimer says:
    @anon

    No, what this site needs most is an arts & culture section like New Yorker has.

    Take someone like Andy Nowicki. He was a school teacher, you know. He’s also an author who published books on bunch of stuff. His partner in crime, Colin Liddell, also has extensive knowledge of arts and culture.

    • Replies: @anon
    , @Mr McKenna
  5. Old Jew says:
    @anon

    Mr. Unz,

    1. I too wish you would have addressed Wednesday’s outage.

    2. Does Keeva come from Akiva (my grandson) ?

  6. anon[989] • Disclaimer says:
    @Anon

    nowicki and liddell are boring

    that Hindu guy in India actually has something to say

    • Replies: @anon
    , @Dieter Kief
    , @ogunsiron
  7. anon[342] • Disclaimer says:
    @anon

    If we’re going to turn this thread into pitching suggestions for additional writers, how about Mark Ames, John Dolan (aka Gary Brecher aka the War Nerd), Yasha Levine, or BronzeAgePervert?

    • Replies: @SporadicMyrmidon
  8. @anon

    From a rather different angle, you might try picking up the purged anti-transgender feminist blog gendertrender.wordpress.com. The fact that a significant faction of “serious” feminists dissent from the transgender agenda is almost entirely hidden in the US MSM, although it seems slightly more overt in other Anglophone countries.
    On the whole, I think striving for a diverse range of purged viewpoints is one of the things that makes this site work (even if I do read Sailer half of the time…).

    • Agree: YetAnotherAnon
  9. Ron Unz says:
    @anon

    P.S. I wish you would have addressed Wednesday’s outage.

    Yes, I suppose I should have. It was just a server malfunction that occurred just after Midnight, and also took much, much longer to clear up the next morning than it should have. For security reasons, I’d rather not go into the exact details, but it’s a problem that previously hadn’t occurred and was different than our last major outage, which occurred just over a year ago. We’re also now taking steps to make sure than nothing like this happens in the future.

    Since we do very frequent backups, less than one hour of data was lost.

    • Replies: @tac
    , @Wade
  10. tac says:

    Thank you Mr. Unz for your open-mindedness to at least air out all of our different points-of-views and let the chips-fall-as-they-may; an equal playing field–a symposium of sorts–will, in the end, benefit those who are open to non-conventional propositions, all the while lending an ear to the ‘perceived’ dissonance ‘claimed–as conspiracy–by the prominent [paid-and-sold-'voices'] of the current repressive power structure.

    Compared to the alternatives at-hand, this site–at least at the present time [Mr. Unz you might want to seriously consider this caveat] and we HOPE it REMAINS this way serves as an convergence of the most dissident voices in our present time…

    Nonetheless, Thank you Mr. Unz for your apparent commitment to the dissident voices and their outlet–please NEVER forget this!

    It seems you are truly a person of an impeccable conscious!

    • Replies: @Bill Jones
  11. tac says:
    @Ron Unz

    Mr. Unz:

    Can you please answer why is your domain (website) thus far not switched to http[S] in deference to http–like most modern sites concerned about some semblance of ‘security’? This is quite easy these days, yet present a considerable ‘question’ to possible implications absent thereof …

    I would hope for your answer …..

    • Replies: @Ron Unz
  12. Ron Unz says:
    @tac

    Can you please answer why is your domain (website) thus far not switched to http[S] in deference to http–like most modern sites concerned about some semblance of ‘security’?

    Well, I’ve only slightly looked into it, but the whole https “security” issue seems pretty unimportant unless you’re involved in credit card transactions or you’re paranoid. Other than that, I can’t really see why anyone could care about encrypting their comments or their web browsing. But obviously lots of the visitors here fall into the “paranoid” category.

    However, your question puzzles me since we actually added https support almost two years ago. Why aren’t you just using the https version of the website like https://www.unz.com/ ?

    The problem is that many of the images on our web pages come from external non-https websites, and they don’t render probably on an https page, or anyway give you lots of browser warnings about security. But other than that annoyance, you should be able to use the https version of the website.

    • Replies: @tac
  13. Wally says:

    Damn the torpedoes! Keep on rolling, Ron. Good work & thanks for allowing Revisionists a voice. Your efforts have been acknowledged at CODOH:

    Ron Unz goes full on Revisionist: “Does anybody seriously believe something so totally ridiculous?”: https://forum.codoh.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=11985

    Israel Shamir praises “Holocaust” Revisionism at http://www.unz.com: https://forum.codoh.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=12009

    Ron Unz site gives full text to Butz’s ‘Hoax of the 20th Century’: https://forum.codoh.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=11979

    More hot Revisionst debates at http://www.unz.com / Join In: https://forum.codoh.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=11798

    at Ron Unz site: Eulogy for the great Dr. Robert Faurisson, by Michael Hoffman: https://forum.codoh.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=12082

    The JEWISH REVISIONISTS thread: https://forum.codoh.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=6912

    http://www.codoh.com

  14. polistra says:

    Excellent!

    Looking at the comparative list, I note several sites that seem to have surrendered to Deepstate recently. Each of them has moved down in popularity. That’s an encouraging sign. It indicates that the audience is hungry for real independence, and recognizes real independence.

    • Replies: @Rev. Spooner
  15. @Anon

    No, what this site needs most is an arts & culture section like New Yorker has.

    No, what this site needs even more is a general-news digest on the front page, updated several times a day. That would make unz.com utterly indispensable, since there’s nothing currently available to counter the ‘controlled media’ (the closest thing is Fox News, which has its own issues and generally represents “Conservatism Inc”).

    Granted, someone would have to be hired to perform this task, and that someone would have to be above any kind of partisanship.

    Meanwhile, the main thing that struck me about the chart above is how obscure all of these sites are. Compare with the tens of millions of views for MSM sites.

    The other thing which occurred to me is whether or not there’s a game plan should anything unfortunate happen to the site’s founder (PBUH!). Give the keys to Sailer maybe?

    • Replies: @Anon
    , @anonymous
  16. @anon

    Steve Sailer writes some interesting arts and culture stuff, as does Theodore Dalrymple at Taki’s. But I would really welcome it if more of it could appear here.

  17. Wade says:
    @Ron Unz

    The long outage did have me worried a bit. However, I’m quite sure that if it had taken a whole week to fix, 95% of us would have checked in once a day and returned to our normal reading schedule once it was back up.

    Unz.com might not yet be beating newrepublic.com in the rankings but I have a feeling your readership is far more determined to support you than are theirs.

    Glad to have you back, Ron!

  18. dailystormer.name – 17,936 world rank (most recent number).

    Maybe there’s a reason that I am not aware of why this is not added for comparison, but the Daily Stormer is a lot more relevant than for example stormfront is at this point in time.

    Due to their hosting troubles after Charlottesville their January 2017 stats are hard to come by though.

  19. First, let me congratulate you, Mr. Unz, on a job very well done. I started following you at TAC many years ago, and it was fine website in its time, but the Unz Review just blows it away. This is, IMHO, the absolute best website on the internet–bar none. (OK, in English at least.)

    Now let me ask: has the ADL come knocking on your door yet? It’s hard to believe they’re going to let your challenge go unanswered:

    http://www.unz.com/announcement/has-the-adl-gone-into-hiding/

    I’m sure you did the right thing. Calling bullies out in public means that when they back down, they lose face and street credibility.

    … Counterpunch, which has shown the door to many of its most popular writers, including Israel Shamir, Paul Craig Roberts, Mike Whitney, Diana Johnstone, Linh Dinh, and C.J. Hopkins, all of whom are now published here instead.

    BTW, whatever happened to Mike Whitney? He’s one of my faves, but he hasn’t published anything here for months. His last article here was in June: http://www.unz.com/author/mike-whitney/

    I’ve searched for Whitney all over the web. Is this now his blog? http://mikewhitneysgraspingatstraws.blogspot.com/

    Anyway, he is missed.

    And you keep up the good work!

    • Replies: @anon
  20. @polistra

    I’m particularly happy with what happened to the Guardian and it’s fake allegations against Wikileak’s Assange and the downturn Counterpunch.org has taken.

    More power to Mr. Unz.

    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
  21. Tom Verso says:

    Mr. Unz,

    Food for thought:

    I have a solid background in social statistics, a Masters Degree in Quantitative Methods historiography, and generally a table, chart and graph junkie. Nevertheless, I have a hard time understanding your table.

    • Agree: Craig Nelsen
    • Replies: @Ron Unz
  22. Ivan K. says:

    I’m very pleased to announce that Guns & Butter has now joined The Unz Review

    Yay! (clapping)

    • Replies: @abbybwood
  23. anon[342] • Disclaimer says:
    @Digital Samizdat

    You missed Ron’s essay “American Pravda: The ADL in American Society” [1], which was in response to the ADL piece “California Entrepreneur Ron Unz Launches a Series of Rhetorical Attacks on Jews”. [2]

    [1] https://www.unz.com/runz/american-pravda-the-adl-in-american-society/
    [2] https://www.adl.org/blog/california-entrepreneur-ron-unz-launches-a-series-of-rhetorical-attacks-on-jews

    • Replies: @llloyd
  24. Ron Unz says:
    @Tom Verso

    I have a solid background in social statistics, a Masters Degree in Quantitative Methods historiography, and generally a table, chart and graph junkie. Nevertheless, I have a hard time understanding your table.

    My apologies. I’ve now tried to slightly modify/extend the table to make it more intelligible.

    (1) Alexa shows the International Traffic-Rank, representing the worldwide popularity of the website. For example, in Nov 2018, our website was roughly the 26,500th most popular in the world, and roughly the 10,000th most popular in America. Based on a number of examples known to me, the traffic-rank distribution roughly corresponds to the pageview-distribution, so since our traffic-rank is approximately 4x better than that of Naked Capitalism, we probably get roughly 4x the average pageviews.

    (2) To make things easier to understand, I added a couple of additional traffic-rank dates, and grouped them all towards the beginning of the table, as the first four columns.

    (3) The final three percentage columns represent the relative change in our traffic-rank/pageviews compared with that of dozens of other (mostly) alt-media websites. For example, since Jan 2017, our traffic-rank has improved by 229% relative to that of Counterpunch and 133% relative to that of The New Republic. But although we’re now far ahead of the former, we’re still well behind the latter. Back in Jan 2016, TNR had nearly five times our traffic, but now we’re within 50%.

    (4) I hadn’t included the Daily Stormer because its URL had been changing, but now went ahead and did so by merging the .com and .name traffic reports. Unfortunately 1/17 was during one of the numerous URL transitions, so there’s no reliable traffic figure.

    • Replies: @Tom Verso
    , @Wizard of Oz
  25. eah says:
    @anon

    From the ‘Guns and Butter’ website — part of the email informing Bonnie Faulker about the cancellation:

    We’ve received an avalanche of negative calls and emails from listeners about your uncritically airing of views by a holocaust denier, climate denial and casting the Parkland mass shooting survivors as crisis actors. As steward of our airways, we can’t defend this content to our listeners.

    One wonders if (((listeners))) is what they mean — because other than the ‘Holocaust’, the other things mentioned (Parkland, climate), or rather skepticism about conventional narratives generally, were — small pun intended — the ‘bread and butter’ of the ‘Guns and Butter’ program.

  26. Tom Verso says:
    @Ron Unz

    Thank you. That is a big help.

    Tables are a two edge sword: presenting information both more efficient than sentences and paragraphs, and at same time potentially more obscure.

  27. Great work, Mr. Unz.

    Somewhat aside, today I came across an account of the 1987 murder of Kevin Ives and Don Henry, two teenage boys out hunting in Arkansas:

    http://www.encyclopediaofarkansas.net/encyclopedia/entry-detail.aspx?entryID=12289 .

    A more definite case of conspiracy is hard to imagine, though the rationale and perps remain unknown – an unsolved case. Leading theory is the boys had seen something they ought not, perhaps something related to CIA-backed drug-running. No country for young men.

    It took the parents a year of fighting local and state cover-up for a grand jury to recategorize it as homicide and begin further investigation. Shortly after that, an informant for the families’ lawyer was murdered. Within weeks, a witness died in a motorcycle accident before he could testify to the grand jury. A few weeks later, another witness was murdered by three shotgun blasts to the face before he could testify. Two months later, another witness disappeared, and the body of yet another person connected to the case turned up in a landfill.

    I’d love to see some unz.com sleuthing and opinion on this case someday.

  28. tac says:
    @Ron Unz

    The reason I mentioned https was not for the encryption, but for the SSL certificate; when the site goes down for some time who’s to say when it comes back up it is not (redirected) some other malicious party impersonating yours — hence the SSL certificate, which identifies you as the legitimate pre-certified party. That was the gist of my question and my apologies if I did not make that clearer; I thought that since the issue of your site going down for some time (as it has been attacked in the past) that this would be implicit in my inquiry, but perhaps I’ve should have made it clearer.

    Nonetheless, I did not know that you’ve previously switched to https. To wit, when one types unz review into a search engine then the http flavor is displayed at the top of search results.

    Now, that I’ve tried the https version, I’ve seen no issues with displaying images thus far. In any case thank you for your response and your explanation that you’ve already switched to https …. I’ll be using that from now on.

    • Replies: @Ron Unz
  29. anon[128] • Disclaimer says:
    @eah

    Bonnie Faulkner went into what she thought was behind her cancellation on the Jim Fetzer show about a month ago:

    https://grizzom.blogspot.com/2018/11/the-raw-deal-with-jim-fetzer-20181101.html

    iirc she suspected it was her interviewing that former US Army Colonel that criticizes the US – Israeli relationship as not being useful to the US. Forget his name but i think he’s of Polish descent

    • Replies: @eah
  30. Ron Unz says:
    @tac

    Now, that I’ve tried the https version, I’ve seen no issues with displaying images thus far. In any case thank you for your response and your explanation that you’ve already switched to https …. I’ll be using that from now on.

    No problem. When we added https support almost two years ago, it actually gave us a lot of headaches, but everything was eventually sorted out. Probably 99.8% of the images still look fine, but since the broken ones from non-https websites are very unsightly, I’ve kept the http version as the default.

    • Replies: @JohnnyWalker123
  31. lavoisier says: • Website
    @Fran Macadam

    I try to steer potential readers to this site all the time. About 1 in 5 will take to the site, while 4 out of 5 will recoil in horror at what is being published here and retreat to a more comfortable news site that does not threaten their worldview and the conventional narrative.

    The quality of the UR is not only because of the many fine and courageous writers here who take on any number of subjects that are viewed as anathema to the great and the good. But also for the many intelligent and entertaining commentators that frequent this site, adding their own invaluable insights to the discussion at hand.

    I am amazed at the quality of so many of the insights that are presented here and I always come away learning something new.

  32. JLK says:

    Someone like John Perkins of “Economic Hit Man” fame might be a good addition.

  33. @eah

    I’ve heard Bonnie Faulkner’s sh0w in the past. I think perhaps she was interviewing Scott Horton of Antiwar radio. I had no idea she held sensible views on other topics (climate, Parkland.) Holocaust denial, hopefully not — but I appreciate Ron’s dedication to giving a voice to even the most maligned viewpoints.

    • Replies: @2stateshmustate
  34. @lavoisier

    And it’s actually pretty diverse, too. Engelhardt used to be one of my favorites, though I rarely read him anymore because of his anti-Trump whining. I enjoy Hudson’s economic commentary and Hopkins gets me laughing every time. PCR’s more left than right these days though I fear for his mental state. He recently did that long article about Assange saying “Venezuela” when he should have said “Ecuador.”

  35. JackOH says:
    @lavoisier

    lavoisier, yours are pretty much my sentiments, too, and I may be daft, but these pages seem to me how genuinely liberal, middle-of-the road discussion used to sound like before post-WWII radicalization sapped our rhetoric of meaning.

    • Agree: lavoisier
  36. llloyd says: • Website
    @anon

    Ron Unz did not offer anything new about ADL and the JQ. His article is for them a useful summary of how their exposure is at this point in time. He is also Jewish and comes under the mantra of self hating Jew. But they are biding their time. The language of Zionists now is really quite violent and thuggish. They don’t even try to pretend they belong to the Western world which they seem to want to make extinct. They are openly boasting of destroying Gilad Atzmon who has gone into the wheedling whining tone of Jews under attack.

  37. renfro says:

    You have the ability to ‘sniff the wind’ Ron…..it makes you successful and a ‘visionary’ in matters you take a interest in.

    The success of unz.com is proof……keep on keeping on.

  38. @Ron Unz

    Hey, Ron.

    I know this is off topic, but could you provide your take on the Jeffrey Epstein situation?

    You once claimed that a large proportion of public figures are probably being blackmailed by shadowy forces. These behind-the-scenes blackmailers are basically puppet masters that can exert leverage over public figures.

    Your articles on John McCain made the point that since many powerful individuals in the national security establishment had evidence of McCain’s true conduct in Vietnam, they had pushed McCain’s career in their political and media social circles. They knew that McCain could never break free of them or his true record in Vietnam would come to light. This likely explains why McCain is wildly belligerent all the time, as he’s basically a compromised mouthpiece of the military-industrial-intelligence complex.

    So do you think there could be a similar dynamic with regards to the Epstein situation?

    It seems like many powerful people (Bill Clinton, Prince Andrew, Allan Dershowitz, the Maxwell family, South Florida police department heads, various entertainers/celebrities, fashion designers) have had their names come up. I wonder if you think these people are under Epstein’s blackmail.

    Also, I’ve always found it bizarre that Allan Dershowitz goes on tv so often to defend Donald Trump. However, when you factor in the whole Epstein situation and President Trump’s prosecutorial authority, maybe it’s not so mysterious.

    Perhaps this could be a topic for another of your American Pravda articles. It’s very fascinating and it seems like the media isn’t giving this story the attention it deserves.

    What do you think? Thanks.

    • Replies: @Ron Unz
    , @SunBakedSuburb
  39. @Rev. Spooner

    What has “happened to the Guardian”? Is it enough to help protect Assange from the contemptible in the US and UK governments?

  40. @Ron Unz

    Indeed thanks for the clarification. But would you please also clarify what “page views” signifies. Does 3 million a month really reflect a large readership?

    I have tried to save your time by Googling “how is page viewership calculated” and was interested to see that it only gave results for TV viewership. Enough effort to lead me to ask you what part of that 3 million will have been generated by a reader/commenter who, e.g. opens the Unz.com app 4 times a day, each time reads one article for the first time, reads two other articles and their comments, returns to the new article and comments twice PLUS responds with a comment on four comments that turn up in his email Inbox. Obviously if one reader can easily wrack up 12 page views a day it matters to one’s understanding of the coverage.

    More practically important to me: for several months I have found the “Email” function for individual Comments not working. (Nothing happens when I press the Email button). Can this be fixed?

  41. Ron Unz says:

    Indeed thanks for the clarification. But would you please also clarify what “page views” signifies. Does 3 million a month really reflect a large readership?

    Each visit to a page counts as a pageview, so a single interested visitor can easily rack up 10 or 15. However, we only average about 2.5 pageviews per visit.

    Obviously readership is entirely relative, so our numbers are reasonably good though hardly stellar.

    Assuming the Alexa estimates are roughly correct, we get about 2/3 the readership of The New Republic, half that of Foreign Policy, and roughly 10% more than TAC, though obviously just a sliver of that going to the NYT. If not for the severe Twitter/Facebook censorship, we’d surely be doing much better.

    The most encouraging comparison is with the dozens of other Alternative Media outlets. Coming from almost nowhere, we’re now well ahead of the vast majority of them, even though many of them have been around three or four times as long.

    I’ll take a look at the comment-emailing issue. I didn’t realize that anyone was actually using it.

    • Replies: @Emil O. W. Kirkegaard
  42. Ron Unz says:
    @JohnnyWalker123

    I know this is off topic, but could you provide your take on the Jeffrey Epstein situation?…Also, I’ve always found it bizarre that Allan Dershowitz goes on tv so often to defend Donald Trump. However, when you factor in the whole Epstein situation and President Trump’s prosecutorial authority, maybe it’s not so mysterious.

    I’ll admit I only have the vaguest notion of the Epstein issue, just what I’ve read in my newspapers and seen in various “conspiratorial” comments. It does seem pretty plausible that he was running some sort of blackmail ring, whether for money or politics I can’t say.

    But offhand, I tend to doubt it has much to do with Dershowitz’s support for Trump. After all, the Epstein ring seems very “Establishment” and the Establishment hates Trump and is trying every way to get rid of him. Don’t forget that the most extreme pro-Israel fanatics are on Trump’s side, including e.g. David Horowitz and the Netanyahu people. Since Dershowitz is a pretty extreme pro-Israel fanatic, that’s probably the explanation for his support.

    Incidentally, I only very rarely look at Steve’s comment-threads, but I did read the one a couple of days ago on the Tucker Carlson book, in which you had quite a few comments.

    First, you were obviously 100% correct about whites not being “oppressed” in CA or TX, and the numerous people arguing with you were just totally ridiculous. After all, any white who owns a small little house in CA could sell it and buy a huge, fancy house almost anywhere else in the country, at least if they didn’t have to remain here for employment reasons. So any white exodus is pretty small relative to that, and the biggest factor keeping whites away is that they can’t afford housing. Internet people get all sorts of crazy ideas about things, which make them look like fools.

    But on a different point, I really think it’s important not to get overly “conspiratorial” and instead apply some common sense. For example, you seemed to strongly suspect that H.W. Bush was involved in the Reagan assassination attempt, and I’m *extremely* skeptical about that idea. It’s true that Bush had a direct family connection with Hinckley, but wouldn’t that make it totally *insane* for him to have picked Hinckley as the assassin? And Hinckley spent 35 years in prison before being released, and never gave a hint of any plot. So there really seems to be absolutely zero evidence. Since Hinckley was obviously a nut, maybe the Bush family connection gave him the idea to shoot Reagan, but that’s an entirely different thing.

    Also, step back a moment. You’re just some suspicious guy on the Internet 35 years later. Meanwhile, Reagan had a whole circle of close allies and supporters, including his wife Nancy, and many of them already didn’t like Bush. They had absolutely every lever of governmental power and authority, and if they had the slightest suspicion that Bush had been involved, surely they would have retaliated. Maybe not try to have him killed or anything like that, but just drop him from the ticket in 1984 or merely endorse one of his Republican opponents in 1988. Yet nothing like that happened. Basically, the assassination attempt changed nothing in Bush’s standing in the administration.

    You have to ask yourself why you would be able to see something about Bush that the entire Reagan Whitehouse and national security establishment somehow missed.

    There certainly seem to be all sorts of likely conspiracies in recent history, but it’s important to always weigh them carefully.

    • Replies: @Miro23
  43. Miro23 says:
    @Ron Unz

    There certainly seem to be all sorts of likely conspiracies in recent history, but it’s important to always weigh them carefully.

    Agree with this. If you don’t weigh them carefully, then it makes it easier to hide the real conspiracies – but saying that isn’t going to change anything. Under free speech it’s back to the old story of sifting through the dross to find something relevant – although given the internet, there’s a lot more dross to work with.

    IMO what’s so difficult to weighed carefully are the effects of the current information explosion. For example, in the past, the MSM could have easily faded the USS Liberty story, but now they can’t. Same for 9/11, and citizens have the same problem with their privacy having evaporated. It’s a world where everyone potentially knows everything about everybody.

    At least corporations haven’t been slow to respond. They’ve come to understand prices, manufacturing and supply chains much better than they used to (+ which politicians they can subvert) and have been able to sell out whole manufacturing sectors to Asia for extra profits.

  44. Anob says:

    Alexa’s estimates are crazy innacurate, I always found. Are the Unz figures close to your logs or Google Analytics data?

    • Replies: @Ron Unz
  45. Excellent results to be proud of! Actually, Unz.com became a home for us, the sane-and-radical-left, or “Trumpenleft”, as the enemies call it. Far Right always had many sites, but the true left, non-identitarian, against humanitarian interventions, against mass migration, against Israel-worship, non-Judeophile, – we were lost until you came. The Counterpunch was a good place for us, but it was taken over by ADL-Left Louis Proyect and his ilk. While Cockburn was alive, he kept this beast at bay; after he is gone, Proyect apparently became the eminence grise behind Jeffrey St Clair. He attacked Unz and all those who wanted to defend Unz in most intemperate terms of sheer hate – I sometimes envy such guys for those unhindered splashes of malice. A Christian knows he should not indulge in malice and hate, but these guys are not even aware of such limitation. Anyway, I’ve met in Paris with Diane Johnstone and Jean Bricmont, and we all agreed that Unz is the place for real left!

    • Replies: @Biff
    , @Ron Unz
  46. Ron Unz says:
    @Anob

    Alexa’s estimates are crazy innacurate, I always found. Are the Unz figures close to your logs or Google Analytics data?

    Well, our own Alexa rankings have generally tracked our Google Analytics traffic data over the last few years. Indeed, when our average traffic increases by 50%, so does (roughly) our Alexa rank.

    Furthermore, a couple of other people have told me the actual monthly pageview numbers for their websites, and these also seem to correspond reasonably well to our relative Alexa rankings.

    So overall, I have no real reason to doubt the Alexa numbers, at least in rough form. There’s another company called SimilarWeb or something, and I think their estimates are somewhat different, but generally follow the same patterns.

    Obviously, there are some exceptions. For example, someone said that a large fraction of the Daily Stormer traffic comes via the “Dark Web” or something like that, so its Alexa rank may be probably incorrect.

  47. RudyM says:
    @SporadicMyrmidon

    Crap, I didn’t know gendertrender got purged. It’s something I have bookmarked, but not something I ever read regularly. That had leads to lots of good material on it.

    It’s hard to get a grasp on the scope of the purge at WordPress, given that it affected scattered communities that don’t necessarily talk to one another (radfems, alt-rightists, cracker barrel leftist conspiracy theorists, etc.).

    The fact that a significant faction of “serious” feminists dissent from the transgender agenda is almost entirely hidden in the US MSM

    Good point.

  48. alas, you do carry Russian fakes news. As long as you feature Saker’s Putinist agitprop, you will continue to carry Russian fake news. The man is simply an apologist for a Pirate, Putin has recently revealed himself to be. Given Saker’s apologetics, he ‘s no better than a pirate himself.

    • Troll: Bill Jones
    • Replies: @2stateshmustate
  49. Mr Unz, Please add a cartoon section.

    It is unfair to expect Patrick Cockburn to fulfill all the comedy needs of your readers, try as he does.

    Your website is now my daily go to site.

  50. @tac

    “It seems you are truly a person of an impeccable conscious!”
    Either that or he has both the ability to harbor a grudge and the capability to do something about it. Both, in my view, are admirable characteristics.

    I too, admire his open-mindedness and welcome the advent of the pod people. I drive an hour a day during which I listen to CD’s I’ve burned from pods (I’m an old fashioned guy re technology). It’s the only time I listen to them because information can be absorbed 4 or 5 times faster by reading, which I gather is frowned upon while driving.

    I disagree a lot with Faulkner but listen and am glad she has this outlet.

  51. @Jack Highlands

    In the 1980s, the CIA maintained private airstrips and aerial drop sites in Governor Clinton’s Arkansas for cocaine traffic flying in from Panama and Honduras.

  52. Bravo Bravo Bravo! Mr. Unz. This, in my humble opinion is the best and most important site I’ve discovered. I think it is a powerful force for change. All that’s needed is more attention. So it is great to hear that more folks are coming to your site.
    Ayn Rand said “The reason why tyrants hate free speech is because their arguments can not stand up to reason” . So simple so true.
    It is a site like The Unz Review with it’s arguments and comments that favor the reasonable self interest of the individual and their state that have the power to change the way people think.
    Thanks again!

  53. @Quartermaster

    Where do you suggest we get the truth at?

  54. Way to go Ron.

    The data speaks for itself. I like Stefan Molyneux a lot, and look at his audience.

    The only questions the legacy media will direct towards him are to explain why he is a racist, how long he has been a racist, and what his racist hate speech is trying to accomplish apart from racism.

    They think they’re taking the microphone from you. But in the end it’s the opposite. The people are taking the microphone away from them.

  55. @JohnnyWalker123

    Based on limited digging, I’ve come to the conclusion that Jeffrey Epstein was/is a Mossad asset running an influence/blackmail operation. His private isle in the Virgin Islands was the scene for some serious darkness; so maybe he was involved in something deeper and more sinister than just a standard intelligence operation. Check Techno Fog’s Twitter: he opens with a pinned tweet depicting a document that infers Epstein may have been an informant for Bob Mueller’s FBI. The dude is a player; that’s why his legal punishment is such a joke.

  56. @Fidelios Automata

    By maligned viewpoints you mean anyone who questions the holocaust? What should I do? I’m an American of German ancestry, one day someone points out to me the glaring holes in the holocaust story.
    I do a little bit of critical thinking, suddenly finding a great appreciation in the saying; “it is victors who write the history of wars”, and that maybe the victors lied about the holocaust. Me being of German descent would have a big self interest in finding out the truth. All my life I’ve only heard the conventional pro Jew anti German slanders.
    Then I run across people like Ernst Zundel, Dr. Faurisson and David Irving. They have powerful arguments that lead me to believe that the holocaust was a holohoax.
    When I was quite young I got hooked on Leon Uris’s novels, I read them all, the first one being Exodus. So you had me, for most of my life I never questioned the whole holocaust story line. Now I believe that it was just propaganda.

  57. Anon[425] • Disclaimer says:
    @Mr McKenna

    No, what this site needs even more is a general-news digest on the front page, updated several times a day.

    There’s DRUDGE for that.

    Maybe a regular sports section from a HBD perspective.

    Maybe a Ann-Landers-like question section.

    Maybe a political cartoon section.

  58. Really not very much to add to all this, Mr Unz – except the most cordial and heartfelt congratulations for this extremely impressive progress, on the war front against the entrenched enemies of free speech and free thought. If this is really how it’s building, I’m gaining stronger confidence every day that the eventual victory is assured. All I can really do is to reiterate what someone in these circles has very recently said – I can’t recall who – that you seem actually right now, as the tide begins to turn, to be the bravest man on earth.

    Thank you doesn’t really cover it. But thank you.

  59. Tusk says:

    Hi Ron,

    Just wanted to say as a relatively new reader I appreciate all the work. I enjoy radical opinions, and certainly opposing ones, I’m unsure as to how people expect to learn without acquiring new information. Thanks for everything.

  60. Stevie says:

    I’m also very interested in the perspectives of other countries unfiltered by the narratives fed in to the US MSM.

    High on my list are native writers from the eternal enemies such as Iran and Palestine. Also on my list are the perspectives of natives of China, the Gulf States (probably need to be very anonymous) and France. Also, countries in South America might be of interest to others here – I sense that they are subject to a great deal of opinion manufacturing.

    At the moment I get most of my foreign news from country specific forums on Reddit – but they don’t feed my appetite for long-form writing.

  61. JLK says:

    @Ron Unz

    I’d be interested in an article setting forth your personal views on the real root(s) of the present Russia-U.S. conflict, with an attached comment-thread that is moderated for quality. This seems to be the issue that is most likely to impact our lives in the near-term.

    Congratulations on the increase in web traffic. There are no doubt plenty of potential information-seekers still out there who have been disillusioned by the anomalies they have noticed in the MSM. Your American Pravda series raises many issues that will be jarring for the average person to absorb all at once. I have reached similar conclusions on several of the topics in the same manner that you apparently did, poring through a lot of source material.

    These issues are too important for your site to be marginalized by semi-literate base expressions of racism and anti-semitism, Heather Heyer fat jokes and plugs for The Daily Stormer. Isn’t it obvious to you how your “project” is likely to be discredited?

    • Replies: @tac
  62. @Ron Unz

    Assuming the Alexa estimates are roughly correct, we get about 2/3 the readership of The New Republic, half that of Foreign Policy, and roughly 10% more than TAC, though obviously just a sliver of that going to the NYT. If not for the severe Twitter/Facebook censorship, we’d surely be doing much better.

    Can you elaborate on the evidence for the censorship? Is it more of the soft type where their algos shows the material less often (hard to detect), or direct blocks of links to Unz domain (easy enough to detect)?

    • Replies: @Ron Unz
  63. Biff says:
    @israel shamir

    I’ve met in Paris with Diane Johnstone and Jean Bricmont, and we all agreed that Unz is the place for real left!

    Havin’ to live around “All we have to do is elect more democrats!” lefties, I almost completely gave up on that political segment, but I couldn’t be happier to hear your distant voices make it through the gawd awful chatter that is the “lefty virtue signalers”. The worlds next demigod will definitely have a “D” next to its name – yikes! (BTW – huge fan of Diane Johnstone)

    ————————

    Since the late nineties I have relied on antiwar.com for thee best perspective on media/government/politics, and as of late(because it is linked from there) the unz review gets my attention just as much.
    Looking forward to more please.

  64. Ron Unz says:
    @Emil O. W. Kirkegaard

    Can you elaborate on the evidence for the censorship? Is it more of the soft type where their algos shows the material less often (hard to detect), or direct blocks of links to Unz domain (easy enough to detect)?

    Well, I don’t really use Twitter or Facebook myself, so it’s a little indirect.

    In the past, some articles have generated an absolutely enormous amount of incoming traffic from Twitter. Then, all the Twitter traffic suddenly disappeared, although lots of people with large numbers of Followers were still Tweeting out the articles. So I assume Twitter “shadow-banned” (or whatever) any Tweets containing the link or something like that.

    With Facebook, certain articles have gotten large numbers of Likes. Then, suddenly, all the Likes went down to zero. That process may have even been repeated a couple of times. I think after a few days all the Likes may have been restored, but those temporary disappearances presumably stopped people from seeing the articles on Facebook.

  65. tac says:
    @JLK

    I would be certainly interested in your ‘world belief’ system one or two years from now (as you try to manage–like some new commentators here–the public view put forth by the ‘winners’ of human catastrophes). Do keep an open mind, but in doing so are you REALLY prepared for what will come? In doing so YOU WILL BE SHOCKED in the very foundations that you hold true thus far (I was very much just like you in the recent past …. think about that for a moment).

    What is suppressed and shocking by your ‘awakening’ or not depends on how TRULY OPEN you are and want to continue to be ….

    Good luck in your pursuit …. you are always free to bury your head in the sand …. your choice really ….

    Moderation may be your subjective output, but you may not be so sure of its objective once you face reality square in the face.

    • Replies: @JLK
  66. JLK says:
    @tac

    Do keep an open mind

    That’s right. The site will grow and gain respect best by attracting perceptive readers with open minds. People who can set aside inured beliefs, spot anomalies in mainstream information and posit viable theories. Let’s not scare them away.

    I won’t clutter up this comment thread further by going off topic.

    • Replies: @tac
  67. As long as certain ideas and remarks are more or less prohibited in newspapers and magazines, the mainstream ideas and remarks that are allowed will be regarded with suspicion by any self-respecting man or woman. The great gift of this website is that it allows those who have been cast out to speak again and be read; ultimately, it should allow thinking people fuller means for making judgments about politics.

  68. @Ron Unz

    Ron, your achievements and your high profile should guarantee that you can get a respectful hearing from the likes of Mark Zuckerberg (I mention him as perhaps the best person to start with). What I have in mind is your putting a proposal which would help solve their problem as well as yours and that of other good websites disliked by SJWs and other enemies. Based on the assumption – which Facebook etc could hardly deny – that they want to maintain the best American traditions of free speech, you might propose to them a model protocol, or several variants, that your website would undertake to follow *and* corresponding protocols that Facebook etc. might use.

    I have in mind explicit additions to what is otherwise likely to be censored or “soft censored”. A starting point for justifying this kind of approach might be the broad brush warnings of unsuitability for children under 15 or “Aboriginal people and Torres Strait Islanders are advised that the following program etc.” Come to think of it I recall asking the GM of the Australian Opera why a warning about offensive words in Alban Berg’s “Lulu” was posted on the surtitle screen and the explanation was that a Jewish patron had objected to a character complaining about the “Yid banker” so it had to be explained that it was in the original libretto.

    Facebook etc. might be encouraged to flag and apologise for the offensive rather than obstruct access and you might offer some flagging of your own, with or without more. If Facebook could lead the way in claiming credit for reconciling America’s free speech traditions with respect for people’s feelings, decency etc. It could be a win-win.

    • Replies: @Ron Unz
  69. Ron Unz says:
    @Wizard of Oz

    Ron, your achievements and your high profile should guarantee that you can get a respectful hearing from the likes of Mark Zuckerberg (I mention him as perhaps the best person to start with).

    Ha, ha, ha. I’d say there’s about a 0% chance I’d be able to get the attention of Zuckerberg or any of his senior people. I’d actually be astonished if any of them have ever even heard of me.

    On the other hand, if my attempted coup d’etat a couple of years ago had succeeded and my small team of commando-academics had seized control of Harvard, soon followed by the rest of the Ivy League, well, then that would have been another story. So near and yet so far…

    On a more positive note, I’ve now fixed that problem with emailing comments, and it’s working once again.

  70. ogunsiron says:
    @anon

    I think Kevin Michael Grace does good culture (classic movies stuff) content

  71. tac says:
    @JLK

    Fair enough JLK; I respect your wishes. Your insight is worth considering when taken into context. I appreciate it! Let’s help each other….

    Peace be with you ….

  72. I am sorry to think your Harvard setback has prevented you remembering that you have proved yourself one of the great upmarket salesmen and campaigners. If there are 20 or 30 people in America who might be worth selling a proposal to (Zuckerberg only being the most relevantly influential) surely there are those, probably politicians or PR people, who could help find a way in.

    One more item (a reminder I think) for use in touching people’s imagination about the problem. In a recent FT piece by Simon Schama he briefly cited the Leo Frank case as a foremost illustration of antisemitism at work. In the Comments I remarked unemphatically that an alternative view of the Leo Frank case might be found in your first or second piece concerning the ADL, which I cited, also remarking that it’s author was also Jewish (or maybe that you were also a Jew). My Comment was deleted without explanation but two or three critical replies (actually just disingenuous abuse) to it were left in place. I accepted the general invitation to communicate by email to the moderator lilah. [email protected] (who had closed down comments for a day or two for “lack of moderation resources”) but got no reply to my good humoured complaint. My impression is that one of the bombastic critical commenters, possibly “onomasticator”, had hit the “Report” button and chosen one or maybe more of “Offensive”, “Disagree” or “Offtopic” and then added a “this is a snide but vicious antisemitic dogwhistle” – and how could poor Lilah cope with that while still hoping to get out on her weekend date? Then again, “Jew” and it’s cognates could be a trigger word – and that is surely a talking point for serious people in the media.

    Thank you for attention to the “Email” function. It’s use can be valuable for the discriminating and selective. I guess there is an average of one or two comments per thread that I would like to record easily for myself or send to another for information. And sometimes a worthwhile conversation and even a good joke.

  73. joun says:

    Thank you for saving Guns and Butter.

    Perhaps an xml feed for it would eventually be a bonus.

  74. @Ron Unz

    #75 (as it is now) was meant, obviously, as a reply to your #72. My omission offers the chance to add the thought that, if some curmudgeon were to get publicity about his proposal for a Proposition by referendum to compel social media to observe First Amendment equivalent rights and freedoms a certain Californian software entrpreneur and publisher could come in as the great problem solving mediator. California would be the obvious state for maximum effect but maybe an incipient campaign in one of the small states where you won your “English for the Children” campaigns would be equally effective for present purposes.

  75. FB says:

    I almost missed this worthwhile little piece…so the shitbag CounterPunch is sinking fast…?…big surprise there…LOL

    Btw…not familiar with this Alexa thing…but I have to wonder who is at the number one spot…probably some retard like that Swedish fag that sits atop youtube with 70 million subscribers…so much for human intelligence…

    • Replies: @JRB
    , @Haxo Angmark
  76. Olorin says:
    @eah

    As steward of our airways, we can’t defend this content to our listeners.

    That’s chuckleworthy coming from KPFA. Here’s a nice rundown of past content that Pacifica Radio has defended to its listeners; as you can see, the station in the ’90s didn’t shy away from content that was considered by some to be “antisemitic.”

    https://www.discoverthenetworks.org/organizations/pacifica-radio-pr

    Maybe the problem is that Bonnie Faulkner isn’t black.

    Or maybe it’s something else entirely, kek, for also at that link:

    During the first few years of the 21st century as well, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) was a huge source of taxpayer dollars for Pacifica Radio, constituting the network’s second-largest source of funds, after listener donations. From 2001 through 2005, CPB issued a total of $6,637,826 in grants to the Pacifica Network’s five stations.

    Pacifica has also received large amounts of funding from charitable philanthropies over the years, including the AT&T Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the Nathan Cummings Foundation, George Soros‘s Open Society Institute, the Park Foundation, the Verizon Foundation, and many others.

  77. Anon[158] • Disclaimer says:

    Ann Coulter’s retweeting of Sailer helped some.

    Unz.com need more presence on Twitter.

  78. The Scalpel says: • Website
    @Ron Unz

    I have noticed that Unz is listed as a “hate group” by some such organization and thus is sometimes blocked by my computer at work. another form of soft-censorship

    • Replies: @Hebraic Hypocrite
  79. @The Scalpel

    emails i receive from some even slightly right of center groups are often marked as suspected spam and its not an accident

    i’m starting to hate

  80. Anon[173] • Disclaimer says:

    Ron Unz should engage more on twitter, that is if he hadn’t been banned from twitter.

  81. eah says:
    @anon

    that former US Army Colonel that criticizes the US – Israeli relationship

    Alan Sabrosky — you can listen to the show at the link (“Zionism – Deconstructing the Power Paradigm, Part Two – Alan Sabrosky, #391″).

    At one point — I listened to it a couple of days ago and do not remember exactly when — he more or less says the ‘Holocaust’ is propaganda, a hoax — Bonnie remains silent — but then that was always her style: she lets the guest talk.

    • Replies: @schrub
  82. Ron Unz says:
    @israel shamir

    The Counterpunch was a good place for us, but it was taken over by ADL-Left Louis Proyect and his ilk. While Cockburn was alive, he kept this beast at bay; after he is gone, Proyect apparently became the eminence grise behind Jeffrey St Clair.

    I’m only very vaguely familiar with that Louis Proyect fellow, but when I googled around, I discovered something amusing. Apparently, back in 2009 Proyect published a harsh denunciation of Alex Cockburn and Counterpunch, whose opening sentence read “For the past 25 years or so Alexander Cockburn has been flirting with the American ultraright.”

    https://louisproyect.org/2009/08/15/alexander-cockburn-fetus-fetishist/

    Poor Alex. If he were still alive, he surely would have been purged from Counterpunch by now…

    • Replies: @Haxo Angmark
    , @Thirdeye
  83. Thank God for the Unz Review! And thank you, Ron Unz, for all the effort you put into maintaining it. It’s one of the very few places I can find unfiltered news. Although I am an ultra-paleo-real-conservative, I still learn much from reading extremely differing viewpoints on the Unz Review. I even find myself occasionally agreeing with their observations. The give-and-take among the commenters is often as interesting and informative as the analyses provided by sponsored contributors.

  84. According to the Alexa.com estimates, many of these other popular webzines have lost half or more of their traffic-rankings since the January 2017 crackdown, while ours has increased by almost 50% during that same period. And our daily traffic surpassed that of TAC about one year ago, and has remained significantly ahead every month since that time.

    i like this website but i have to say its odd that you are comparing your site to what are mostly ideological allies to some degree and gloating a little over your success relative to theirs.

    • Replies: @Ron Unz
  85. Ron Unz says:
    @Rabbinical Rube

    i like this website but i have to say its odd that you are comparing your site to what are mostly ideological allies to some degree and gloating a little over your success relative to theirs.

    Well, this is an “alternative media” webzine, so I think it’s reasonable to compare our traffic with others in the same category, whether Left or Right. Obviously, we only draw a sliver of the readership of The New York Times or various fashion- or sports-oriented websites.

    Moreover, since the beginning of 2017 we have increased our relative traffic-rank by over 130% compared to that of The New Republic, one of America’s most venerable liberal opinion publications, and totally “mainstream.” I also just added the comparison with Foreign Policy as well, and our improvement against that half-century-old mainstream of the foreign affairs community was also over 130%.

    In each case, we’ve moved from getting just a thin slice of their readership to something like half or two-thirds, which I find quite encouraging.

    • Replies: @JLK
    , @Wizard of Oz
  86. schrub says:
    @eah

    Wrong. The person being described is Lt. Colonel Karen Kwiatkowski Ph.D. who was purged out of the Pentagon by the Neocons back in 2003.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Karen_Kwiatkowski

    She is a very good writer about military affairs and would be a great addition to Unz.

    • Replies: @anon
  87. JLK says:
    @Ron Unz

    I also just added the comparison with Foreign Policy as well, and our improvement against that half-century-old mainstream of the foreign affairs community was also over 130%.

    Not surprising. All one needs to know about Foreign Policy can be gleaned by the identities of the most-referenced figures on its annual “top 100 Global Thinkers” list: Sock puppet Angela Merkel, Paul Krugman and Thomas Friedman.

  88. anon[385] • Disclaimer says:
    @schrub

    no, “eah” was correct

    Sabrosky is the one i was trying to remember

  89. abbybwood says:
    @Ivan K.

    Speaking of adding “Guns and Butter” (which I always loved), I am wondering about what happened to Ralph Schoenman and Mya Shone’s show “Taking Aim” that used to be on W-BAI in NYC??

    Perhaps a podcast with them once a week would also be of value here since they apparently lost their gig (got fired!) from W-BAI? Always thought they both had plenty to add to the “conversation”.

    Would be curious what Ron Unz and others here think of them?? Thanks!

  90. @Ron Unz

    I’m not giving up on my hope that you will find a way to sell a (Free Speech) deal to the big beasts of social media while I can find anything new to add.

    Here are links which might give you reason to offer evidence to the UK House of Commons Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee with a view to prising open the door of Facebook, Twitter, YouTube etc.

    Facebook documents seized by MPs investigating privacy breach – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-46334810

    and

    Facebook “struck secret deals over user data”

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-46456695

  91. JRB says: • Website
    @FB

    Haven’t you heard that this Swedish guy has been found out to be a racist and an anti-semite ?

  92. @Jack Highlands

    the two murdered boys, and related killings, are part of the Clinton murder machine bodycount (most recent addit: Seth Rich). Go to:

    http://arkancide.com

  93. JRB says:
    @Ron Unz

    I recently did an experiment in the comment section of You Tube by posting a politically incorrect statement concerning 9/11. This resulted in 5 likes (1 in 40 views) for 1 hour (between the 200th and 400th view). Then the comment was apparently detected. No likes anymore at all for a few days. During this time there were at least 4000 additional views. When I investigated by looking at the comment section anonymously my comment was still shown, but totally at the end of around 100 comments.

  94. @Ron Unz

    in fact I’m one of the hardRight fascists that Cockburn was in touch with, via an occasional e-mail.

    at one point I suggested an alliance between Left-populists such as hisself and my kind of people, but he demurred, saying

    “no, we’re afraid you’d eat us alive…”

    which is true

  95. @FB

    it’s probably

    porn dot com

  96. Tyrion 2 says:

    This is one of the smartest spins on when a new entrant grabs market share that I’ve ever read.

    Why would anyone visit those other “alternative” sites when it is provided here free without advertising and in an exceptionally elegant format?

    I may strongly disagree with a number of your articles but your product design shown here is fantastic.

  97. I had similar issues with the table that Tom Verso raised even though I am no statistician. If I understand the table correctly, from the Alexa ranking criteria alone, UR would seem to have gone south. Regardless, the worrisome trend – for whatever reason – of the Left’s capitulation, or mutation brings to mind the recent piece by C. J. Hopkins on Manufacturing Truth:

    There is only one truth … the official truth. The truth according to those in power.

    and

    Naturally, the powerless do not regard themselves as heretics. They do not regard their “truth” as heresy. They regard their “truth” as the truth, which is heresy. The truth of the powerless is always heresy.

    But then if heresy is to fuel resistance, so be it. The history of innovation, reform and revolution viz a viz the human condition has scarcely relied on official patronage, but more so on heresy. At any era of human era, sheeple will continue to follow blindly – continue to constitute the compliant, quisling class. If a revolution does indeed prevail, they are sure to follow suit. By mere force of habit. If we are to let power appropriate monopoly on truth, we will be derelict in our duty to provide society with alternative dreams and realities, as daunting as that task may at first seem. Power to UR and kindred webszines for daring to articulate alternative dreams, alternative realities.

  98. JackOH says:

    Ron, a few weeks ago our local university newspaper ran three or four comments beneath a few articles, all under one screen name. The comments were brief, pointed, civil, and at least one of them deflated the pomposity of a senior faculty member, one of those pet, or pocket, Leftist types that some institutions like to have to flaunt their big-shoulders credibility.

    The screen name was taken from a movie character, and the whole oeuvre, maybe 200 words total, put me in mind of a junior faculty guy or gal trying to find some wiggle room within a claustrophobic department.

    Then, the comments disappeared. There was no mention whether they’d been moderated out by a student editor, faculty advisor, another party, or removed by the author.

    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
    , @Svigor
  99. @JackOH

    Please give us Part 2: your report on your investigations of the reason the comments were removed.

    • Replies: @JackOH
  100. @Ron Unz

    Never let it be said I gave up on support for the potentially persecuted…. I have a name for you that I first came across on the front page of today’s Australian (Australia’s last broadsheet and a last refuge for many after next year’s federal election let’s in the professional harvesters of the net takers’ votes). Dr. Aron d’Souza (who probably lives within walking distance of me).

    See https://www.theaustralian.com.au/life/weekend-australian-magazine/the-plotter-the-tech-titan-the-wrestler-and-his-190m-lawsuit/news-story/490cd89ce13ca8bcb049baa32085c47e

    The article quotes people as saying he is ambitious and status conscious but also as saying he introduces the cleaners to the CEOs at Christmas parties. Whatever….He is obviously very smart, legally qualified and without family to take up his time.

    Anything he wrote for UR would be interesting.

    More, he could be your lateral thinking way in to ways to make the big social media beasts behave properly wrt free speech without soft censorship. Indeed the article’s description of his work with Peter Thiel suggests that Thiel might be a potential valuable ally. (Sorry if you know him well, have fallen out with him, and I am trying to teach grandmother…..).

    • Replies: @Anon
  101. The comment-thread velocity has gotten enormous under posts from some authors (certainly Unz and Sailer). This lowers usability and quality of the comment threads, inflicts moderation work on the bloggers, and makes pages load slower. It also means that trolls drown out analysis on contentious subjects. The change has been very noticeable the last few months.

    A solution would be to add a discussion board where users can spawn topics. Or some system of dedicated “off topic” discussion threads to which material can be shunted. Anything that would re-target the excess and off-topic comments somewhere other than underneath every blogpost from the more popular bloggers.

    • Replies: @Rabbinical Rube
  102. Svigor says:

    Hey Ron, how about a “trending” button/link? Needz to kno where to direct muh shitpoasting.

  103. JackOH says:
    @Wizard of Oz

    Wizard, I don’t have a clue as to why the comments were removed, or by whom they were removed. There were no telltales stating something like “comment removed by author” or other party, such as you sometimes find on other comment sections. I’m pretty aware of the insider goings-on at the university, too, enough so to productively speculate on who did what to whom and why. But, I’m baffled here.

    BTW-I’m willing to consider the possibility that error, maybe a misjudgment on the part of a student moderator, rather than malice is at work.

    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
  104. JackOH says:
    @Svigor

    Svigor, LOL.

    I think–not sure–our overlords are made uncomfortable, if not downright fearful, when criticism of them is made with great specificity, with significant persistence, and when the motive of the critics seems to be to rectify genuine harm done to them. IOW-I think we have on UR something close to a political party, or maybe an identifiable faction within one of the major parties.

  105. Benji says:

    I work in front of computer at a city entity. I’m able to research topics and products and yes news and articles. UNZ sight is blocked and when I try I get a warning of not appropriate for working environment. I wondered if others have the same issue..

    • Replies: @Biff
  106. @academic gossip

    The comment-thread velocity has gotten enormous under posts from some authors (certainly Unz and Sailer). This lowers usability and quality of the comment threads, inflicts moderation work on the bloggers, and makes pages load slower.

    the site should be modified to only load the last 50 or so comments until the user scrolls up

  107. Ragno says:

    This is hardly an original thought, even among these comments. But God bless & protect Ron Unz, who stubbornly keeps his candle burning even as the forces of darkness are blowing out all the others.

    Those forces no longer have any fear of us rising up to reclaim our homelands and civilization, though; so expect that candle to be snuffed out sooner rather than later.

  108. @JackOH

    It’s good to know from your last par that there’another UR commenter on the presumptively sane and civil list :–)

    I now see too that you weren’t referring to your own comments being removed. But what about a letter to the local university’s President (or Provost or whatever) along the lines

    “Dear Dr Strangelove

    In these days when once admired institutions have been losing respect because of craven deplatforming I am saddened to see what might be thought a symptom of current fashionable diseases in [name of university newspaper] that I read regularly. Three literate and civil Comments were recently removed without explanation. These were at …… True, one of them mildly satirised the style of a faculty member….. etc. etc. I write in the hope of learning that XY U is determined to maintain traditions of robust free speech, and, indeed, to strengthen them. Can you please reassure me about this in general and even perhaps in respect of the example I cite.

    ….. ”

    Fun for all!!!

    • Agree: Endgame Napoleon
    • Replies: @JackOH
  109. Biff says:
    @Benji

    UNZ sight is blocked

    Forbidden fruit is the sweetest.

  110. How about a section with an interdisciplinary, off-narrative Book Review / Obituary combo, focusing more on the actual books, works of art or other work of the departed dignitary, countering the NYT Book Review / Obituary section, which never misses an opportunity to inject PC messages, even when the book—or the deceased individual—really wasn’t that political.

  111. JackOH says:
    @Wizard of Oz

    Thanks for the kind words, Wizard, which are, indeed, high praise coming from you. I’ll venture that a lot of readers here recognize your contribution to this site, both in your substantive comments and the example of your generosity of temperament.

    We do a pretty good job here, I think, of fleshing out details and, perhaps, hidden motives that lie behind political debate and social phenomena. Ron has done a pretty good turn by reviving, in a good way, a more robust view of race, nationality, and other human “primalisms” that we usually only get in a sort of dessicated and channeled way through mainstream media.

    But, sometimes it seems to me we unduly conjure up knowing moral actors and human volition to explain phenomena we don’t like, but that may just as well be explained by accident or human error or the working of the “invisible hand”. Just a thought.

    Thanks again, Wiz, and best wishes.

  112. Thirdeye says:
    @Ron Unz

    There’s something very fitting about CounterPunch imploding right at the same time they’ve declared war on the Unz Review. Any of their writers who heed their call to abandon Unz are only marginalizing themselves.

    One of my favorite quotes about the Catholic Church is to the effect of “the hand of the past is on the tiller, rigidly keeping it on a course towards the rocks.” That applies to the Left as well, with the generation of leftists that came of age under the influence of the 1960′s New Left rigidly holding the course of identity politics that has led them to disaster after disaster. Louis Proyect calls himself a Marxist but in practice is of the anti-working class, identitarian New Left.

  113. Anon[318] • Disclaimer says:
    @Wizard of Oz

    Your article seems to be paywalled.

    Aron d’Souza

    Jew, Portuguese, SL burgher, or Indian?

    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
  114. anonymous[419] • Disclaimer says:
    @Mr McKenna

    I agree a media graphics culture and arts orientation would obscure and cloud the lens that makes this website such a great success. Its the unfiltered and un-redirected single sensory mode that allows high density information to be delivered with a minimum of interception by an artist, culturalist or graphic technophile. Expressions of occurrences and circumstances in near raw form make this site impelling. Avoiding as much of people’s bias as possible should be the editors job.

    Why not stick to true reporting of the fake news, to rational current, timely analysis by informed writers and journalist, and continue the often competitive sometimes argumentative democratic commentary that produces insights. awareness and views few in fake or true news have discovered, revealed or observed.

    What the comments are doing is similar to peer review.. Yes the peers are often not as informed on the surrounding facts as the journalist, but their experiences when expressed in context of the news often alter or broaden viewer understanding and provide the means to discover behind the scene rationale as well as to project likely future events.

  115. @Anon

    Indian/Portuguese on father’s side, Chinese on mother’s.

    Here is the article:

    The Australian

    Gawker’s ruin: ‘Mr A’ revealed
    The Hulk Hogan sex tape case that destroyed a media empire is well known, but its Australian mastermind has stayed hidden. Until now.

    By DAVID SWAN

    From The Weekend Australian Magazine
    December 7, 201817 MIN READ29

    Australian law graduate Aron D’Souza was sitting at a dinner table opposite Silicon Valley’s most powerful man, the billionaire PayPal co-founder and Facebook’s first investor, Peter Thiel. D’Souza, a 26-year-old entrepreneur, was nervous but confident. This was one of ­Berlin’s finest restaurants, ­frequented by world leaders, and Thiel was here at his ­invitation. D’Souza was hardly flush — he’d been staying on a friend’s couch, and had caught a train to this meeting — but he ordered the six-course degustation menu because he needed time to pitch an audacious plan that would take three to five years to unfold and cost Thiel upwards of $10 million. It was a meeting that would change many lives.

    [MORE]

    “If this had been pitched as a ­Hollywood script, people wouldn’t believe it,” Thiel tells me from his nondescript Los Angeles office lined with Donald Trump books and memorabilia. “It’s extraordinary what we did. And I don’t think this is too hyperbolic… It was one of my greatest philanthropic endeavours.”

    That one meeting in Berlin set in train events that brought down one of new media’s pioneering stars, the equally reviled and admired news and gossip site Gawker. It involved one of the greatest pro wrestlers of all time, Hulk Hogan, a lurid sex tape, and a lawsuit that would see a US jury award $US140 million ($190 million) to Hogan (real name Terry Bollea), sending Gawker into bankruptcy. It has had a profound impact on the US media landscape and on the right to privacy. Depending on your view, it was either a gift to the world, as Thiel says — or a strike to the heart of freedom of speech.

    D’Souza, now 33, has never spoken publicly about his role in the secret plot that consumed five years of his life. Countless articles have been written about it, a Netflix documentary was made, a Hollywood screenplay is in the works and a book has been published, but the central character — “Mr A”, as he was known — has previously declined every request to speak on the record. Now that the case is resolved, though, D’Souza is ready to end the mystery and confirm that he was the mastermind behind a legal strike described as one of the most consequential lawsuits in the history of modern American media. “I have never been one to seek the spotlight,” he tells me over dinner in Melbourne. “I find it uncomfortable talking about it. It’s such a change of mindset for me to now discuss this.”

    Peter Thiel. Picture: Noah Berger/Bloomberg via Getty Images
    Peter Thiel. Picture: Noah Berger/Bloomberg via Getty Images
    Peter Thiel settled into the Berlin restaurant and ran his eye over the wine list. He ordered the second most expensive riesling, in keeping with his thesis that the priciest wine is just for show and the second most expensive is actually the best. D’Souza broached the subject that had brought them here: “I know what you think about Gawker,” he told Thiel. “Here’s what I’m proposing.”

    For years — and this is how D’Souza and Thiel characterise it — Gawker had been a schoolyard bully, picking fights with celebrities and relative unknowns without hesitation or basic fact-checking. Started in 2002 by UK journalist Nick Denton, it began as a website for rumours about Manhattan celebrities and the media industry but soon grew to become one of the world’s most visited — and controversial — websites, spinning out to other sites including Gizmodo, Jezebel and Lifehacker.

    The two still get visibly agitated talking about Gawker. Thiel refers to it as the “MBTO”, or “Manhattan-Based Terrorist Organisation”, while D’Souza describes its editors as pornographers rather than journalists. Thiel became fixated on Gawker back in December 2007 when its tech blog Valleywag published a post headlined “Peter Thiel is totally gay, people”. It was a short article, 397 words, and wasn’t the first or last time the site would comment on someone’s sexuality. It wasn’t unusual for Gawker and didn’t make any big waves at the time; Thiel’s sexuality was already an open secret among family and friends. What was unusual was his reaction to the story, and the means he had at his disposal to do something about it.

    Thiel, who is not only one of tech’s most ­important figures but also one of its most mysterious, is worth billions but more importantly he has a patience and determination to play the long game, whether investing in tech start-ups or ­taking on a legal fight. “I think that outing gay people is wrong, it just is,” he says. “It’s a ­personal decision, in terms of who you come out to, and at what point you do it.” The comments underneath the story further stoked his rage. Denton, ­Gawker’s founder and managing editor, showed up in the comments the day after the article’s publication, questioning why Thiel was still in the closet and commenting that maybe his parents didn’t approve of his sexuality because they were Christian, or perhaps Thiel was afraid that he couldn’t get money out of Saudi Arabia. “Neither of these were correct,” Thiel says. “But there was all this sort of psychological speculation, and it’s a far from neutral thing… that’s what really goes on when people get outed. I felt it as an extraordinary violation of my privacy. And there were a lot of things that were factually incorrect about it.”

    Thiel says he thought about taking action for years, talking with anyone who would listen to his complaints about Gawker and inviting ideas on what to do about the media company. And then, over ­dinner in Berlin in April 2011, he met the ambitious, well-dressed Melbourne up-and-comer who laid out a plan that might actually work.

    Aron D’Souza is a true citizen of the world. He grew up in Australia, California, Switzerland and Ohio. His family on his mother’s side came to ­Australia from China as gold miners in the 1850s, settling in Melbourne, while his father, who is of Indian-Portuguese heritage, arrived from India as a student in the ’60s. Even when based in the US and Europe the family would return home for a few months every year. D’Souza lives in Australia today to be close to his grandmother, who is in her 90s, and to manage his business interests.

    He remembers his parents — his father, a research scientist, and his mother, a teacher — constantly inviting an array of guests to dinner, ranging from judges to ambassadors and diplomats. The family would talk long into the night, ensuring that their three children were always included. It’s those conversations that D’Souza says developed his sense of confidence, giving him the ­opportunity to learn about the world and how it works. “They always treated me like an adult,” he says. “I had an army of people at my disposal, quite literally. Those were great people to connect with.”

    He did two undergraduate degrees at Monash University, and then a doctorate at the University of Melbourne in political philosophy and intellectual property rights, before heading to Oxford to study law, drawn to the subject not because he had ambitions to practise law but to develop his knowledge as a legal philosopher. D’Souza says it was his time at Oxford that changed the trajectory of his life. He was introduced to leaders in government, philanthropy and business, including Thiel, whom he met through a mutual friend. Within 18 months, D’Souza had managed to convince the entrepreneur that they had the power to do something about Gawker, and that Thiel should meet him for dinner to talk about it.

    The pair considered whether Thiel should buy Gawker, but this was quickly discounted because they felt it would reward Denton for bad conduct. Litigation was D’Souza’s favoured option, with the aim of suing Gawker into extinction. His plan was simple: find someone who had been badly damaged by Gawker and was willing to take the company on, and then get Thiel to secretly fund the ­lawsuit. It was a plan that was fully formed — D’Souza had calculated how long the case might take to win and how much it was likely to cost.

    “It was a sense of agency, that it was not going to be fast or simple, but nevertheless it was straightforward in the sense that, if you did all these things, if you put all these things in motion, it would be quite powerful,” Thiel says. Complaints about Gawker were not new. “People would complain but no one would ever do anything,” he says. “One of the things you had to do is assess ‘what’s the probability that something like this might work?’ And if a lot of people had tried to do ­something like this and it had failed, that would be a low probability. But if no one had even tried… then it might be more doable. Over the course of that dinner it really struck me that probably no one had seriously tried in any way. And so if we had a good plan it might well work.”

    D’Souza wasn’t driven by any particular hatred of Gawker — though he is gay and did support Thiel’s mission. He was more attracted by the challenge. “I like doing things that other people think are impossible,” he says. “Mountains that can’t be climbed. An impossible task. Had I thought about the ethics of ‘pornographic journalism’? Yes, but being able to do something so different and so new was what drew me to this. There have been many billionaires, CEOs and ­Silicon Valley titans over the years who have all said we were so brave to have done that.”

    D’Souza laid out his plan: Thiel would set up a shell company to hire investigative reporters and lawyers to track down possible causes of action against Gawker. The plan relied on them finding someone who had a stronger case against Gawker than Thiel; someone who could potentially wring millions from the company in damages. “It might be a moral failing on my part, but [although] I had enough courage to fund it I did not have enough courage to be the front person in this,” Thiel says. In the years to come, he would be criticised for the secrecy of the plan. But Thiel says it was worth it, explaining: “We can debate if one should fund things secretly or not, but I would have been out of my mind to let them [Gawker] know I was doing this. I have no idea what they would have done to me if they’d found out.”

    Hulk Hogan.
    Hulk Hogan.
    At first glance, Hulk Hogan didn’t seem to have the strongest case. He’d been filmed in 2007 by his best friend Bubba the Love Sponge, a ­Florida shock jock, having consensual sex with Bubba’s wife Heather Clem — “Not a really cool thing to do,” Thiel acknowledges. Gawker leaked the video online under the title “Even for a ­Minute, Watching Hulk Hogan Have Sex in a Canopy Bed is Not Safe For Work but Watch it Anyway”. Gawker then refused to back down, citing its ­reasons in an article titled “A Judge Told Us to Take Down Our Hulk Hogan Sex Tape Post. We Won’t.” This was despite Hogan declaring that the video had been filmed without his knowledge or consent. The article and its attached video racked up millions of views.

    Thiel, D’Souza and their lawyer of choice, Charles Harder — a flashy, TV-ready attorney from Los Angeles — had found their case. They just had to convince Hogan to take up the fight. Behind the scenes D’Souza was pulling strings, acting as ­Thiel’s go-between with Hogan, Harder and the rest of the legal team — all of whom wouldn’t know who was bankrolling the case until after its conclusion.

    It was an incredibly ­difficult process, D’Souza says, given that for years he couldn’t tell anyone what he was working on, even his ­boyfriend and family. “I had to come up with these explanations as to why I was travelling all the time,” he says. He was still based in Melbourne but would travel frequently to San Francisco and Florida for the planning and eventually the trial. “My cover story was that I was doing intellectual property consulting. Which is so boring that no one ever inquires. No one says, ‘Tell me more’. ”

    D’Souza wasn’t just devoting his time to the Gawker case. As well as working more publicly in law, he founded the Australian branch of the Nexus Youth Summit (a philanthropy organisation linked to the Clinton Global Initiative), was named a Global Shaper by the World Economic Forum, and set up a quarterly legal magazine called The Journal Jurisprudence.

    The Gawker plan ended up taking the full five years that D’Souza had predicted, and it did cost Thiel millions of dollars. But it worked. After an arduous years-long trial process, in which Gawker tried to settle three times, Hogan was awarded $US115 million for economic injuries and emotional distress on March 16, 2016. The jury would later add $US25 million in punitive damages. Gawker filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy three months after the verdict and put itself up for sale. Denton personally filed for bankruptcy shortly after, and Gawker.com was shut down. (Some of its former media sites such as Gizmodo, Jezebel and Lifehacker are being operated by a different company.) The plot was complete.

    Charles Harder. Picture: Getty Images
    Charles Harder. Picture: Getty Images
    Harder describes the verdict as a “win-win-win”. Hogan’s “privacy rights were invaded in a very severe way,” he tells me. “I wanted to help him; he wanted the help; and a third party was willing to fund the case… And we won a $140 million jury verdict.” For Harder, the right to ­privacy in the US was at stake. Not just for Hulk Hogan, but for all Americans. “I am not over­stating this,” he says. “Gawker was advocating that any site which posted information about people should be allowed to post secretly recorded footage of a person naked in a private place, including a bedroom. This was a massive threat to the privacy rights of everyone in ­America — not just celebrities, but everyone.”

    Winning the case — and doing so in such ­spectacular fashion, which Harder describes as “knocking the bully’s lights out” — brought in a host of new clients for the lawyer, including US President Donald Trump and his wife Melania. He represented the First Lady in her defamation case against Britain’s Daily Mail, which agreed to pay her nearly $US3 million and issue a full retraction and apology over claims she “provided services beyond simply modelling”. “That victory led to my work for the President and the recent court ­victory against Stormy Daniels, ­getting her defamation case thrown out and an order requiring her to pay the president’s legal bill,” Harder says.

    “It’s a dangerous world,” he adds. “A person or business can build up a valuable reputation, slowly over 20 years, 30 years or more, only to have it potentially destroyed by false media reports in a 24-hour news cycle. People and companies need protection from the out-of-control media. That’s where we step in.”

    To others, though, the Gawker case raises contentious issues. Was the payout too high? Should an entire media company have been shut down because one ­billionaire didn’t like what was written about him? Where does the notion of the freedom of the press come into all this?

    Thiel describes the plot against Gawker as a form of philanthropy, and takes issue with those who characterise the case as a billionaire trying to silence the media. He sees it as doing ­journalism a favour. “I think Gawker was a ­singularly sociopathic bully,” he says. “And I believe that there will not be something like that that can happen again. There was an opening for something like that in the early 2000s [but] I think it’d be very hard to start something like this from scratch. I think there was something about Gawker where hate was intentionally weaponised, in a really extraordinary way. It was this scapegoating machine.”

    Despite the overwhelming victory, and while he’s proud of the result, for D’Souza there’s still an undercurrent of despondency surrounding the case, in that someone even of Hulk Hogan’s ­stature had to rely on a tech billionaire to fund his case. Thiel agrees. “Even though [Hogan] was perhaps the most ­successful pro wrestler of all time, it was beyond his means to pay for this and get redress. That is an extraordinary fact.”

    D’Souza says the case taught him the importance of patience, and also that there are many more conspiracies going on than one might think. The nature of a conspiracy is of course that they are hidden from plain sight, but D’Souza says the sheer number of them would surprise most ­people. “Take Alex Jones,” he says, referring to the infamous conspiracy theorist behind the InfoWars website. “He was banned by all the major social media platforms on the same day. There were lawsuits filed all by the same lawyer. Someone out there is co-ordinating it… there is much more complex co-ordination effort out there than meets the eye.”

    Gawker founder Nick Denton. Picture: Fred Lee/ABC via Getty Images
    Gawker founder Nick Denton. Picture: Fred Lee/ABC via Getty Images
    Nick Denton did not respond to requests for comment for this story, but he opined in a blog post earlier this year — now deleted — that the saga demonstrates the power of “dark money” in the legal system. “By some it was seen as a playbook — using proxy plaintiffs and litigation finance; ­techniques for powerful people to punish critical journalists,” he wrote. “It’s a shame the Hogan trial took place without the motives of the plaintiff’s backer being known. If there is a lasting legacy from this experience, it should be a new awareness of the danger of dark money in litigation finance. And that’s surely in the spirit of the ­transparency Gawker was founded to promote. As for Peter Thiel himself, he is now for a wider group of people to contemplate.”

    Sam Altman is president of Silicon Valley’s ­biggest and most successful “startup accelerator”, Y Combinator, and runs the non-profit artificial intelligence research organisation OpenAI, of which Elon Musk was a director until recently. Altman is a friend of D’Souza and describes him as “ruthlessly ambitious”. He says he wasn’t surprised to hear about his work on the Gawker case. “Plenty of people will tell you he’s a ­monster networker,” Altman says. “He is really competent and is obsessed with status and power in a way that is hard for me to relate to. He definitely is someone with these aggressive goals that most people would describe as too audacious… they’re goals that most people would be at minimum unwilling to say out loud, but more likely wouldn’t even shoot for. And I really respect that about Aron.”

    Another close friend, who requested anonymity, says D’Souza’s ambition can sometimes rub people up the wrong way. “What’s amazing, though, is that he has an incredible ability to win people over, and I think most people who might be put off at first wind up coming to like and respect him enormously,” the friend tells me.

    “I think Aron is so ambitious in part because he is such a strong strategic thinker. He can see a way to accomplish things and solve problems that other people might think of as impossible or even laughable. In other words, what some people see as hyper-ambition is just him thinking through how to get from A to B. He’s also just a little bit eccentric — maybe nine parts ambitious and focused, one part eccentric. I respect that about him too, because it makes him more ­imaginative and willing to look at challenges that other people don’t see.” The friend describes the Gawker situation as highly complex, but says D’Souza’s motivation to pursue it as an access-to-justice issue was proof that his heart is in the right place. “I think that this tendency to see his individual pursuits in the context of broader social issues is one of his core traits.”

    Australian entrepreneur Phillip Kingston is also close to D’Souza. The pair met in 2012, introduced by a mutual acquaintance. “We didn’t need to do too much due diligence on each other,” Kingston says with a smile. “We just trusted each other straight away.” In 2013 the pair founded ­Sargon, a financial technology company that has a stated mission of exporting superannuation to the world. Kingston serves as its CEO, with D’Souza managing director. Kingston didn’t know about the Gawker plot — just that D’Souza had to travel a lot — and the pair worked methodically on the company that now spans Australia, New Zealand and Hong Kong, providing financial institutions and entrepreneurs with the technology they need to grow investment funds and financial products.

    Like D’Souza himself, Sargon has been flying under the radar, plotting a big splash for 2019. And as with the Gawker case, D’Souza is quietly working away, patiently plotting its trajectory until everything is in its right place.

    Peter Thiel was an early investor in Sargon, but Kingston and D’Souza bought him out to increase their stake in the company. Thiel and D’Souza still travel together several times a year and remain close. “Aron is the sort of guy where nothing is beneath him,” Kingston says. “He’ll be on a call with a world leader and walking around the office dusting. Every office cleaner we’ve ever had, he’ll invite to our Christmas party. He’ll be introducing our office cleaners to the CEOs of banks. He has no concept of hierarchy; he just says, ‘Let’s get them all talking’.”

    D’Souza says he has great ambitions for his life beyond the Gawker case. He uses planning documents in which he details his objectives for each week and month, stretching out to 10 years’ time. He describes the success he’s had with the Gawker case and soon with Sargon as “two out of three” — “I want to do one other large commercial venture,” he explains. “I want to wind up when I’m 40. I then want to dedicate my life and capital to philanthropic pursuits. First I need to build the capital base, the human capital network, and the mental disposition I need to achieve great things.”

    “He’s just getting started,” Thiel says with a nod. “Really just getting started.”

    DAVID SWANREPORTER
    David Swan is a tech reporter for The Australian. With deep experience across start-ups, business and tech David is uniquely positioned to cover Australia’s fast-growing technology ecosystem and how it’s changi… Read more

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    • Replies: @Miro23
  116. Miro23 says:
    @Wizard of Oz

    D’Souza laid out his plan: Thiel would set up a shell company to hire investigative reporters and lawyers to track down possible causes of action against Gawker. The plan relied on them finding someone who had a stronger case against Gawker than Thiel; someone who could potentially wring millions from the company in damages. “It might be a moral failing on my part, but [although] I had enough courage to fund it I did not have enough courage to be the front person in this,” Thiel says. In the years to come, he would be criticized for the secrecy of the plan. But Thiel says it was worth it, explaining: “We can debate if one should fund things secretly or not, but I would have been out of my mind to let them [Gawker] know I was doing this. I have no idea what they would have done to me if they’d found out.”

    The problem with all this, is that the rich and political in the US are not so honourable as Thiel.

    How many shell companies of activist reporters and lawyers have been similarly (secretly) organized by rich and powerful players to “track down possible causes of action” (blackmail) against political opponents?

    My guess is that there are plenty of them – and d’Souza acknowledges it. For example:

    “He (Alex Jones) was banned by all the major social media platforms on the same day. There were lawsuits filed all by the same lawyer. Someone out there is coordinating it… there is much more complex co-ordination effort out there than meets the eye.”

    So it looks like another pathology, in US society’s long list of other pathologies.

  117. imo the site needs relevant advertising

    maybe start with something like a referral link to Culture of Critique at Amazon or other similar books

    or offer small static adspace for $50/month or so just to get things rolling and see what the market bears

    if i had an Alt-Right blog or podcast and i wanted to increase readership or listenership it would make sense to advertise here

  118. Lemurian says:
    @SporadicMyrmidon

    Absolutely, and not only feminist women but trans themselves question the “agenda”

    Some accounts I occasionally read for insight on this are:
    (Twitter) @DebbieHayton @mrkhtake2 @FionneOrlander
    mirandayardley.com and drradfem.org focus on this from feminist perspective.

  119. Russ says:
    @FKA Max

    Well done good man!

    Meanwhile, it’s apparently curtains for The Weekly Standard. One guesses that Bill Kristol shall now spend _all_ his time stumping for David French to become President of the United States.

  120. Hail says: • Website

    I’d like to place this here:

    An idea to use comment ‘Agree’ counts as a crowdsourcing method to create a Most Popular Comments feature [#215 in that thread]. It could sit right beside the Most Popular Articles/Posts on the front page.

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