Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Bloggers Doing Good

Over at Balloon Juice, a formerly right wing blog gone hopelessly Democratic with John Cole's re-alignment, a commenter wrote about a problem a friend was having and was published yesterday.
I have an amazing friend on the west coast. She’s smart, funny, quirky and a fantastic artist, who designs intricately detailed, one-of-a-kind art quilts made from found textiles

****

Then a few months ago she got laid off from her editing job. She managed to keep up her health insurance, which is good,thing, because she was just diagnosed with liver cancer—treatable, but expensive, even with insurance. She was struggling to bring in some income (e-bay, on-line selling, freelancing editing, etc.) and seeming to do OK…then I didn’t hear from her. Called, e-mailed, nothing. 2 weeks go by. She e-mailed yesterday to say that she’d just got out of the hospital, where she was admitted after collapsing at home. Reason she collapsed? Malnutrition. Isn’t it lovely not to have enough money to pay for food AND medical expenses?/p>


John asked if his very active and rambunctious Comment crowd thought they could help. This site had raised many thousands of dollars for Barak Obama's campaign in the Primary and the General. Sometimes you find an astonishing and tear jerking ability of people to do good, and this is how that worked out today.
*****, I’m almost too overwhelmed to write. I am utterly agog. Over 200-some-odd people—utter strangers to me—have contributed to my health expenses through PayPal and as of right now it adds up to about $5,000! Tears are streaming here! I’m sputtering, blithering here, in amazement and gratitude and relief

There is more detail to this story and it is at Balloon Juice if you care to read more than my short excerpts.

This is an unruly frequently rude bunch who are both funny and deeply informative. I have been a daily reader for some time and only lately much of a commenter in great part for Cole's writing but the hook is the Comments section. I don't know if this says anything about politics and I'm unsure if it has any great meaning in regard to anything in particular - other than the capacity of people to individually do good when presented with an opportunity.

I doff my cap to these folks and I wanted to do so publicly. I'm sure this doesn't account for much of a reward but it's what I've got.

5 comments:

Svensker said...

Thanks, Chuck. What an amazing group of people, huh?

Nick Istre said...

I also have to give props. It just goes to show that the Balloon Juice group aren't just talk, but will put their money where their mouth is at. It's one of the reasons I continue reading John Cole's blog, other than his right-wing to hard-line Democratic Party support nearly mirrors my own re-alignment. He is perhaps my first stop in my feedreader, and I often read down the comments for the insight and entertainment they offer.

I will have to contribute too when I can get out of this financial hole I got into after being laid off at the end of December. Got a new position a couple weeks ago (one that is actually is more enjoyable and has more potential than my previous also awesome position), but I did burn through my savings during that period I was looking for work and training myself in new technologies.

Again, I am fortunate in that even when laid off, I didn't have any medical situations arise that might have interrupted my getting a job again. And my previous employer is really cool and maintained my medical insurance for me (which I'm paying for via some contract work I did with them after being laid off).

Chuck Butcher said...

Svensker - amazing

Nick - that is happy news, I hope this new position works out well for you.

Imee said...

That's nice and really touching, for all those people to contribute, and for you to give kudos to them. Seems like a really tight community there. :) Just goes to show, that despite the lack of insurance, health care and food, and whatever else from the government and employers, there's still people out there who care. The irony of this is it wasn't liver cancer that sent her to the hospital for 2 weeks..it was malnutrition! That's not just ironic but completely crazy. Why don't the government give food to people like these--the people who need it most--and not to those who can afford 100,000 grand with Dr. Kamrava for octuplets (hello, food stamping 14-children-bearing Suleman).

The Chinuk said...

Simply inspiring. A righty goes left and gets his soul back – and spreads the love.

You can't beat a story like that.