Skip to comments.Charitable Money Laundering For Democrats: The Tides Foundation
Posted on 03/06/2010 12:19:47 PM PST by American Dream 246
Activist Cash.com does a fantastic job of tracing foundation and activist activities and has long cast a jaundiced eye on the actions of the Tides Foundation and its offshoot the Tides Center.
Here's a sample, but I invite you to scroll through all the site's postings on these groups:
Most of America's big-money philanthropies trace their largesse back to one or two wealthy contributors. The Pew Charitable Trusts was funded by Joseph Pew's Sun Oil Company earnings, the David & Lucille Packard Foundation got its endowment from the Hewlett-Packard fortune, the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation grew out of General Motors profits, and so on. In most cases, the donors' descendants manage and invest these huge piles of money, distributing a portion each year to nonprofit groups of all kinds (the IRS insists that at least 5 percent is given away each year). This is the way philanthropic grantmaking has worked for over a century: whether a given endowment's bottom line occupies six digits or twelve, the basic idea has remained the same.
Now comes the Tides Foundation and its recent offshoot, the Tides Center, creating a new model for grantmaking -- one that strains the boundaries of U.S. tax law in the pursuit of its leftist, activist goals.
Set up in 1976 by California activist Drummond Pike, Tides does two things better than any other foundation or charity in the U.S. today: it routinely obscures the sources of its tax-exempt millions, and makes it difficult (if not impossible) to discern how the funds are actually being used.
In practice, "Tides" behaves less like philanthropy than a money-laundering enterprise (apologies to Procter & Gamble), taking money from other foundations and spending it as the donor requires.
As Activist Cash notes, it usually is hard to track the ultimate donors because of this elaborate shell game. When charities like those controlled by Teresa Heinz suddenly started contributing to Tides during her husband's presidential candidate, did the money go to environmental terrorists? Supporters of Hamas? Or ACORN? It was often difficult to tell.
Bret Jacobson of Big Government has carefully scanned Tides' 2008 tax returns and we can see who the recipients of all this charitable, tax- exempt money are, though:
A look at their 2008 tax return, 160-plus pages, reads like a directory of the New Left. I've pulled out the donations to ACORN groups and Big Labor's Working America Education Fund (not many people know unions take in ostensibly charitable donations) and one theme is clear: "general support" seems to be a popular phrase. Another theme: notice that states receiving money are critical to election-year success for Democrats. And finally, notice just how much money is being thrown around.
ACORN, Inc - 100,000 Latino voter registration and engagement canvass
ACORN International - 100,00 general support
ACORN Institute 49,500 - general support 25,293 - general support 10,000 - general support
Project Vote 275,000 - 2007-08 Election Administration Program 225,000 - election administration work in Arizona, Florida, and Pennsylvania 115,00 - general support 100,000 - 2008 Voter Participation Program 100,000 - Election Administration Program 100,000 - general support 100,000 - civic engagement work in New Mexico 75,000 - general support 65,000 - general support 53,086 - voter registration program 50,000 - Voter Participation Program 48,000 - nonpartisan Get Out The Vote work 35,000 - general support 30,000 - general support 25,000 - general support 10,000 - general support
Working America Education Fund 261,661 - general support 245,000 - general support 200,000 - civic engagement in Ohio 125,000 - organizing in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, Colorado, and Maine 115,000 - general support 100,000 general support 65,006 - general support 30,000 - general support 30,000 - General support.
Of course, this makes a mockery of campaign finance laws and as well the charitable tax exemptions.
It's way past time that the IRS thoroughly investigates this sham operation and Congress end the practice of allowing such money laundering. Tax-exempt operations should have to contribute in ways that are direct and traceable.
I see her name almost hidden in this article:
TERESA HEINZ KERRY - the wife of John Kerry.
She is tied hand and foot to this organziation, and after 9/11, she also formed a “families of 9/11” group and told the families not to take any of the donated monies, because they were going to sue the govt for lots more. I heard (but I don’t know for sure) that some of the families didn’t get anything, when they had been offered over $3 million. While that money could not bring back their family member, for some it could have been invested well and saved for college for the orphaned children.
An old post:
The Prince of Tides- Bush ads, Kerry ads, the Tides Foundation, and so much more...
various FR links | 03-06-04 | The Heavy Equipment Guy
It is my understanding that foreign governments can donate to 501c3 organizations as well. I doubt they are concerned about the tax deduction but rather the influence the money has on politics domestically.
Who do you suppose would like to keep us dependent on foreign oil and or weaken our country by curtailing domestic energy production. Oil money buys a lot of enviro-astroturf.
Corporations have customers who can stop doing business there. They have shareholders who vote for directors. There are at least two ways for a corporation that is seeking to influence public opinion to be controlled by third parties. Further, there is a limit to which shareholders will allow a corporation to use their money to support causes not related to the corporate business model.
Foundations on the other hand have self-sustainaing boards who tend to nominate like-minded people to replace any retiring members. Foundations do not have to report to any third party, as long as they comply with the very generous body of law and regulations.
I don’t think the founding fathers envisioned giving such entities power in perpetuity to influence public opinion and to fund radical causes.
There is a simple way to fix this: boost the percent of spending of foundations to an amount that would be impossible for any investment portfolio to exceed. In other words, require the foundation to spend itself out of existence over time.
Given our fiscal disaster and massive budget deficit, there may finally be some interest in Congress to gain some tax revenue from the spending this would trigger.
If we are to reclaim this Republic, we must do all we can to decrease the funding sources used by the left. For the health of the Republic, we must throttle Foundations and take away their path to eternal meddling in our affairs.