Starting out with the simple intention to proclaim the “good news,” I ended up driven to preach the worst sort of everyday news: the ease with which even those of us bearing the best of intentions can be driven, in an instant, to utter distraction by an insecure frenzy for coin.
— James Poulos, The Art of Being Free: How Alexis de Tocqueville Can Save Us From Ourselves
The truth is I have understood all of this for a long time, and I go on making editorial compromises with media interested only in their bottom line simply because I am interested in mine too: I need the supplementary income. If this were not a concern, I would just post everything I feel the need to express right here at www.jehsmith.com. Perhaps that day will come. Perhaps I will force it to come through this public airing of my grievances. At the same time, I note that there are a few publications, closer to the boutique end of the media world, whose editors have had the grace and decency to edit me with a very light hand (I mention here in particular The Point and TANK). My sincere thanks to them. There is of course a direct correlation between exposure and compromise, and the higher one climbs in the ladder of visibility, the more one can expect to be forced to express oneself through clichés and dumb punchy position-taking. My hope is to stay in the shade-covered side streets of the boutique district as much as possible in the future.
Attention and money: when it comes to writing on a blog, I’m not interested in the former and I’m not in need of the latter. I admire people like Bill Watterson who had the integrity to turn down hundreds of millions of dollars (literally) in order to maintain the purity of his art, but for ordinary mortals like me, the easier option is to render unto Caesar in the first place. Here is my job, and here is my hobby, and never the twain shall meet.