Folks, I hope you can see the problem here.

Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson and his wife, Candy, earned between $8.9 million and $27 million in a recent 16-month period, largely fueled by book royalties, speaking engagements and Mr. Carson’s service on the board of directors for two big companies.

The figures were included in Mr. Carson’s personal financial disclosure, a copy of which was viewed by the Wall Street Journal.

Humble blogging doesn’t pay the bills, but being a lunatic gets you between $8.9 and $27 million in book royalties and speaking engagements.

I am moving ever so slowly towards the goal of launching Progress Pond. At this point, a variety of factors have conspired to put me more than a year behind schedule and far in the hole financially. When it is finally ready to launch, we’ll have something new and I hope somewhat exciting. Progressive writers will have an easy way to share their stuff with a ready-made audience and get paid for it instead of just doing it for free.

The old model that was used here and at sites like Daily Kos was that people would post diaries and the only compensation they would get is the gratification that comes with knowing that someone was reading it and the thrill of getting immediate feedback in the form of comments.

This always bothered me. I didn’t mind giving people an audience that they wouldn’t otherwise have, and I only got a pittance out of the resulting advertising, but creative people already have a hard enough time getting paid without entering into an arrangement where they have no shot of getting any money for their efforts.

Why not give people their own blog that they can customize and give them the incentive to build an audience by letting them keep the vast majority of the resulting revenue?

Setting this up is a lot harder than it sounds, however. And I’ve been in Beta for at least a year now. Recently, I moved several steps closer to my goal, though, and I’m now close to the point where I can see if it will actually work.

Unfortunately, I don’t get paid millions to write nonsense books.

So, if you have a little change to throw in the jar, it might help put me over the top and this new toy will be available to you all shortly.

I’ll have more to say about this project soon, and I can answer some questions in the comments, but I’m in the process of putting the new Washington Monthly magazine online between now and Sunday night, so I’ll be kind of busy. I’ll check in from time to time when I have the chance.

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