Why Backbencher?

Reading Backbencher will make you smarter, wealthier, and better-looking.

OK, that’s not true.

But reading Backbencher will give you a front seat to an experiment in journalism. It doesn’t cost you anything, and if you’re still working at home your boss won’t see that you’re burning up company time reading political stuff on the Internet. Here at Backbencher, malingering brainworkers are our Alpha and Omega, our bread and butter. Or rather, they will be our bread and butter if we ever get around to asking you to buy a subscription. Which at the moment seems pretty unlikely. I started Backbencher when I was unemployed—ahem, I mean freelancing—but now I have a fairly demanding day job as a staff writer for The New Republic, so these days I’m using Backbencher mainly to flog pieces I write there and elsewhere.

You don’t have to lift a finger

We send each new entry to your email inbox. I’m not saying we’re the Parnassus of the American republic of letters, but we’re probably more interesting than most of the crap you have waiting in your inbox.

Become the envy of your friends!

Backbencher is drenched in snob appeal. It will never be particularly successful, and therefore it will never cease to be gratifyingly obscure. If you say, “Here’s something I read in Backbencher,” your friends will have no idea what you’re talking about, and that will make you feel very smug and superior. Should we fail in our efforts and become hugely famous and popular, you can feel superior by saying you were a regular reader before we tarted the damned thing up.

For more about Backbencher’s proprietor in a slightly more serious vein, click here.