Lambert's post about Avedon's post mentioning flyers has latched onto me and refused to let go. Corrente and the sites it links to are invaluable to me because they allow me to learn about the truth behind the confusion and the smokescreen put up by those who would seek our country's ruin; however, I'm painfully aware how few people are exposed to what I read every day. Many of them don't know this corner of the internet exists, and many others don't even use the internet as their major news source. That's why I love Avedon's idea of flyers so much- it gets the truth off the internet and into a physical, tangible form that people can take with them, read, and consider, without the need for a computer.
But today I had a rather mad idea: instead of making new content for a flyer, why not tweak some of Corrente's current content and put it into a newsletter?
I'm thinking a single, standard letter-size sheet of paper, 8 1/2 x 11 inches. The content would be blog posts at Corrente, modified as much or as little as necessary to work in print- although we could of course write new articles specifically for the newsletter. Anyone who wants to volunteer an article could submit one; however, to make sure the articles are transcribed in their entirety in a legible type size, I don't think there should ever be more than three articles on the page. If more than three people volunteer per newsletter, we could set up a rotating schedule of authors.
The way I see it, two articles would be in column format, with the third article in a wider format; the wider article could be on the top or on the bottom, depending on its importance. This and this are about what I have in mind. We could even include Vastleft's 'American Extremists' cartoons if we could spare enough space.
Once the newsletter is ready? Put it into PDF format and stick it on the site here. At my local Kinko's, I think a black and white copy runs about 10 cents a sheet- it might be even less. So $100, an amount I can spare, will get me at least 1000 copies (provided they have enough paper). Everyone else can make as many copies as is reasonable for them to pay for, and we can scatter them across our home towns and home cities. Leave them at universities, at the Social Security Administration, at the DMV, at local hospitals and clinics.
The idea isn't exactly original; during the debate over slavery in the former half of the 19th Century, radical abolitionists would make their views heard by publishing their own newspapers. William Lloyd Garrison's The Liberator and Frederick Douglass' North Star are among the more famous examples. Every middle school and high school student, at least of my generation, learned about them in US History class- how they published their papers to make their views known to the masses, and how they were often met with violent responses from pro-slavery groups; printing presses were destroyed, and at least one man, Elijah Lovejoy, was murdered by a pro-slavery mob for his publications.
The printed word is useful in ways the on-screen word is not: it can be saved away, it can be passed around in physical form, it cannot be deleted. It can reach people who don't use the internet with the regularity we do here. Corrente serves as a conduit for the truth; why not bring it beyond the internet? Why not release it into the wild world to do its good work?
As for a name for this new newsletter, I thought we could name it after the site's 'official' hypertext address: The Corrente Wire. 'The Wire' for short.