This picture was taken in the spring of 2009. You can see me interviewing an Iraqi cardiologist, Omar Al-Kubaysi. The interview was published on an alternative news site.
It probably took me, counting everything, at least one full working day to get it done. This includes traveling, preparing, doing the interview, writing it, etc.
I did not get paid for this work. I asked to be reimbursed for my traveling expenses, but never saw one cent.
At the time I was financially struggling. I had a meager paycheck and I was paying everything for me and my girlfriend who was still studying to be a gynaecologist. On top of that I was continually critized by her parents for not making enough money. Three months before my father had killed himself. You cannot really tell from the picture perhaps, but I looked like shit and felt like shit.
In a way doing this interview was my way of dealing with pain, my way of trying to show I could do something, that I had skills.
Somehow karma exists perhaps, because three years later the political party linked to the small organisation that asked me to do this interview hired me to write propaganda for them, for which I got fairly well paid, all things considered.
You could say, do whatever you are passionate about, and the money will come, somehow, some time.
I put a hell of a lot of time in this website. I get some money through it, but very little compared to the time that goes into it. At times I feel very irresponsible doing this. I know I have passed on a lot of money doing what I do. If my wife would not encourage me to continue, I would probably have quit or be far less active here.
I feel strongly about the issues we post about it, so it is an automatic reflex to do so. I know of far more easy ways to make money, and perhaps doing that also makes the world a little better. My line of work is not that ethically tainted. Perhaps I should fine a way to not let it affect me so strongly when Israel blows away dozens of Palestinians, when people demanding a living wage are ridiculed, or when some people applaud violence… Perhaps I should switch off all media and just focus on my own turf, and make money in a far more direct way than through running a website. Monetary gain is not even the main driver behind this website. If it was I would blog about fashion, travel, food and post lots of pictures of my ass. Ok, of some girl with a nice ass.
I also do not know if what I have been doing lately, promoting the work of others, such as Lee Camp, Norman Finkelstein, Abby Martin, and so many others, is the way to have impact…
The website’s audience is growing. This month we will break the record for most visitors in one month. We will probably break it tomorrow, one week before the month is out.
I daily worry about how to make the website better, which articles to offer that have value for others, and have the potential, however small, to make the world a kinder, more peaceful, more respectful place with decent and fulfilling working and living conditions for everyone on this planet.
We want to make more unique content, as a lot of what we offer here can also be found elsewhere, and often in video form, which is catchier and more pleasant to ‘consume’.
If you have suggestions as to what kind of articles you would like to see here, let us know via the form below.