This is your last chance

This is it.

If you’ve been waiting for the right moment to join the fundraiser for my consumer advocacy site, today’s the day.

You’ve probably read my impassioned pitches, you’ve watched the parade of premiums, and you’ve reviewed the reasons to join this list of supporters.

Elliott Advocacy is underwritten by An independent provider of low cost CDW/LDW insurance for use with rental cars. Up to $100,000 cover with no deductible. Policies available on a per day, per trip or per year basis. Also works with overseas rentals. Try now.

So here’s why you should consider becoming an underwriter now:

Win airline tickets!
Yes, I still have Southwest Airlines tickets to give away. If you sign up before 5 p.m. Monday at any level, you’ll qualify. If you’re already on the list, no worries — you can become a repeat donor and you’ll also put your name in the hat.

Eagle Creek luggage
I’m really excited about our final giveaway of this fundraiser. I have a few sets of the all-new Eagle Creek Expanse Collection, specifically designed for families and travelers who demand quality and value. Expanse luggage offers a clean exterior cleverly hides the embedded technology, including, a central lock point and patented secure-zip toggles for pick-pocket protection.

It all ends on Friday
That’s the last day you can get your name on this list with a designation as a spring fundraiser supporter. And we are so close to meeting our goal. As I write this, we’ve raised $19,725. So close! Won’t you help us get there?

Before I continue, let me say “thank you.” I’m confident that this is going to be a record fundraiser because of you. Not only do we have your support, but two companies — Allianz Travel Insurance and LegalShield — have joined with matching donations. (By the way, I know some of you have made a contribution by check. Please pardon the delay in acknowledging your donation, but I’m on the road and my mail is being forwarded.)

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During the last few weeks, some of my friends and supporters have asked me “why?” Why go through the lengthy process of raising money in $25, $50 and $75 increments when you could be running a lucrative affiliate program or selling quickie ebooks?

Great question. I actually know bloggers who make seven figures by hawking credit cards and selling useless stuff through an affiliate program. And I’ve been tempted to take shortcuts, like splitting one page into two in order to run more banner ads, or writing “advertorial” stories to sell things.

But I’ll be honest with you, such commercial stunts only cheapen the advocacy. And where would my loyalties be if I did that? Would I still stand with you, the consumer? No, I would care only about making even more money, and you, my dear reader, would only be a means to an end.

Put differently, I’d rather take your $25 donation and answer to you than take $250 from Chase and take my orders from some reputation operative in New York who tells me what I can and can’t say on my own site. I’d rather say what must be said than obediently accept a muzzle.

If that kind of fiercely independent consumer journalism is what you want, then please consider becoming a supporter now.

Time is running out. We’re so close to meeting our goal. You can make it happen.