Because if you do, you probably have your own reasons.

Me, I come for the conversation, the breaking news, the unfettered analysis, the other side of the coin, the through-the-glass-darkly viewpoint. Here’s what I mean: On any given day, after a brief scan of the internet, I can tell you almost exactly what stories will appear on the network nightly news broadcasts — some days, I can even predict the order of their appearance around the pharma ads (if there’s no breaking pill-or-patch news) or the car ads (if there’s no exploding-or-recalled-vehicle news) or the giant bank ads (if there’s no robosigning, eviction, creative fee, or bailout news).

But I can never predict what’s gonna show up here at FDL. I never know what my colleagues are working on and what might percolate onto the front page. That’s because the breadth-of-field is so vast.

But I do know this: what I read here won’t be constrained by sponsorship. It won’t be trimmed down to please a funder. It needn’t be slanted to avoid offense to a patron. That doesn’t happen here — and that makes us darn near unique.

Don’t you think the Huffington Post is in a bit of a box reporting on advertisers fleeing Rush Limbaugh after his latest offense, given that their parent company AOL is still a sponsor? Don’t you suppose there are some pretty strict parameters at the Washington Post around reporting on the expanding for-profit education scandals, considering Kaplan Test Prep University pays the bills over there, and has for years? And do you look to NBC or MSNBC for the most accurate Pentagon-unapproved war news, considering their reliance on retired industry-corrupted-generals-for-pay and the big General Electric logo on their paychecks?

We Firedoglake members are the owners here. When we saw the need for warm-weather gear at #Occupy encampments nationwide, we organized to meet it. When we realized that Legacy Media’s narrative was that “#Occupy is over” we organized sponsorship of traveling scribes from one city to another, to carry the word of best-practices and report back to all of us what they were. When we realized the wrong questions were being asked of all the wrong players about the foreclosure fraud crisis, we were lucky to have an intrepid News-man to task, open-endedly, to ferret out the answers most reporters didn’t even know to ask.

And — do I need to add? — I hope when I say “we” I include you. You’re a member, right? And you’re continuing as a member, correct? I sure hope so. Because we Sunday-nighters are a tight bunch, although we welcome newcomers when they show up (if they mind their manners, woe betide those who don’t!). So I’m only saying it one time during our evening together: join, please, if you haven’t. Firedoglake needs your support: progressive infrastructure needs building, and it’s a-building right here, with your contribution.

Because, if you come here often (like I do!) you need to become a member. Firedoglake needs your support; we need your membership. A steady stream of invested member dollars is the best way to continue to build this infrastructure and to be able to respond creatively when the Next New Thing comes along that deserves FDL’s attention.

Please join up!