kirk screaming

There’s clearly no intelligent life here.

Things are apparently getting even uglier over at the NRO.  In what can only be termed as a truly ghastly turn of events, they’re holding a Star Trek-themed on-line pledge drive. (You know what?  I like that as an entirely hyphenated word, like He-who-shall-not-be-named, Star-Trek-themed-on-line-pledge-drive.)  Thus sprach K-Lo:

If by noon L.A.-time on Friday (an olive branch to our left-coast friends) NRO’s Star Trek fans have donated $10,000 cumulatively, we will host a Star Trek Day on National Review Online later this month. Our lineup that day will include a package of pieces—from some familiar faces, and some surprises—all about Star Trek. As you donate, just be sure to write “pro-Trek” in the comments somewhere.

God, don’t you know she has to totally FORCE herself not to put exclamation points on everything?  ("An olive branch to our left-coast friends!!!", "…All about Star Trek!!!", "Please don’t use my Vanilla Hazelnut creamer again without asking, Jonah!!!!  Thanks!!!!!!  KJL SmileSmileSmile") 

Her movie review of the new film Click?  It’s called (no, really!)  "Click Clicks".  Can’t you feel the phantom exclamation points just hovering out there?  It’s like Byron York (she thinks he’s dreamy…) told her one day that if she kept larding on the exclamation points, no one would ever take her seriously as a writer.  So she stopped using them.  But that’s absolutely all she changed, so now they’re still there, floating invisibly at the ends of her sentences like amputated limbs. 

And these people want you to give them money so they can keep writing like this!

I believe I will let my new favorite blogger, D. Cloyce from Cloyce’s Coffee Klatsch (Fully caffeinated and 100% plagiarism free!™) take it from here:

Nevertheless, far be it from my sense of decency to leave untouched the comedic material provided by the NRO’s campaign. What nearly stills my poison pen from heaping scorn on their efforts, however, is the aura of utter pathos that emanates from the fundraising appeal written by the magazine’s editor Rich Lowry.

Thank god he said "nearly"!

Rich continues by offering some expert business advice:

Because—let me be frank here—we lose money. NRO is a loss leader. And here’s what’s unfortunate—the print magazine is a loss leader too. We are surrounded by loss leaders. If we ever have ideas to further our mission, they are guaranteed to be loss leaders. If your business needs advice on how to develop a loss leader, come to us. We have it down. I assure you we can help you start to lose money almost immediately. It’s our specialty. We have been doing it for 50 years and hope to keep doing it for many more.

In case you didn’t get the message, Lowry is admitting that the National Review is a loss leader. Which begs the question: what exactly are these losses leading their customers to? The Ninth Circle? Kool-Aid? A weird political cult?

In the real business world, a loss leader is designed to attract customers, who will then buy items that will make a profit; by definition, loss leaders only work as such if you make a profit on something else. For example, Wal-Mart uses "everyday items" as loss leaders, knowing that their customers, once in the store, might make some purchases that are steeply marked up. Even Amazon discounts some of their books as high as 60% in the hope that book buyers will add other, more profitable items to their shopping carts.

But how are the National Review‘s magazine or its site or its advertising "loss leaders"? Is Lowry really claiming that all the NR’s business revenues are loss leaders for their fundraising? Or, as I suspect, does Lowry, the editor for a magazine that claims to represent business and conservative interests, have no idea what this term means?

Cloyce, I believe that you have hit the nail squarely on its wee, flat head.  He keeps using that word, but I do not think it means what he thinks it means.  

Seriously, though.  You should drop those kids at the NRO a couple bucks if you can spare it.  They provide an invaluable service to satirists like myself. Where else would we get such potent ammunition against conservatives?  Who else could have brought us Ramesh Ponnuru?  (Who would have bothered?)  Where else can we find lists of the Top 50 Conservative Rock Songs?  (But behind a subscription wall so the artists won’t sue!)  And who can imagine life without that "Superfly Conservative" Jonah Goldberg?  (Ah, Jonah.  The poster child for it not being about What You Know, but Who Your Mommy Is.  The ne plus ultra of doughy pantloads.) 

You must subscribe to the NRO, if only to line that gilded bird cage with dollar bills from whence our Jonah can order whole pizzas for lunch and play Minesweep.  (And very occasionally excrete a column, of course.)

Come on, y’all!  Don’t you want to see the NRO "Live Long and Prosper"?   It’s the in-flight magazine of the Wingnut Welfare lifestyle!  Dig deep, man!  Dig deep!