Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Important Info on the Election

All the important candidates profiled:

--AZ-Sen: Jon Kyl

--AZ-01: Rick Renzi

--AZ-05: J.D. Hayworth

--CA-04: John Doolittle

--CA-11: Richard Pombo

--CA-50: Brian Bilbray

--CO-04: Marilyn Musgrave

--CO-05: Doug Lamborn

--CO-07: Rick O'Donnell

--CT-04: Christopher Shays

--FL-13: Vernon Buchanan

--FL-16: Joe Negron

--FL-22: Clay Shaw

--ID-01: Bill Sali

--IL-06: Peter Roskam

--IL-10: Mark Kirk

--IL-14: Dennis Hastert

--IN-02: Chris Chocola

--IN-08: John Hostettler

--IA-01: Mike Whalen

--KS-02: Jim Ryun

--KY-03: Anne Northup

--KY-04: Geoff Davis

--MD-Sen: Michael Steele

--MN-01: Gil Gutknecht

--MN-06: Michele Bachmann

--MO-Sen: Jim Talent

--MT-Sen: Conrad Burns

--NV-03: Jon Porter

--NH-02: Charlie Bass

--NJ-07: Mike Ferguson

--NM-01: Heather Wilson

--NY-03: Peter King

--NY-20: John Sweeney

--NY-26: Tom Reynolds

--NY-29: Randy Kuhl

--NC-08: Robin Hayes

--NC-11: Charles Taylor

--OH-01: Steve Chabot

--OH-02: Jean Schmidt

--OH-15: Deborah Pryce

--OH-18: Joy Padgett

--PA-04: Melissa Hart

--PA-07: Curt Weldon

--PA-08: Mike Fitzpatrick

--PA-10: Don Sherwood

--RI-Sen: Lincoln Chafee

--TN-Sen: Bob Corker

--VA-Sen: George Allen

--VA-10: Frank Wolf

--WA-Sen: Mike McGavick

--WA-08: Dave Reichert

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Deconstructing the Scaife Foundation (Part 2 of 4)

Yesterday, I began by looking at the mission statement and giving patterns of one of the three charitable foundations operated by Richard M. Scaife. For background on the Allegheny Foundation please refer to this diary. Further background on the right-wing noise machine (and the funding behind it) is available at http://www.mediatransperancy.org/
Note, I am in no way affiliated with the folks at mediatransperancy.org, I simply appreciate their work and will reference it when applicable.

As I stated yesterday, the Scaife Foundations are three seperate entities which claim to have seperate purposes and causes. The purpose of this, and forthcoming diaries, is to explore the mission statements, giving patterns, and connections of these organizations in order to show how a small group of people are effecting the political discourse in this country. I do not claim to have the answer to the inevitable follow-up question, "What can we do about it?" That being said, I have faith in the power of our community, and that in words of Sun Tzu
If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.

From the Scaife Foundation Website, the Carthage Foundation lists its mission statement as follows:
The Carthage Foundation confines most of its grant awards to programs that will address public policy questions concerned with national and international issues. There are no geographical restrictions.

In its most recent annual report, 2004 Annual Report (.pdf), the Carthage Foundation lists over $23,000,000 in total assets, and over $5,600,000 in total disbursements for the year. The Carthage Foundation lists five officers for 2004, Richard M. Scaife (Chairman), R. Daniel McMichael (Secretary), Michael W. Gelba (Treasurer), Alexis J. Konkol (Asst. Secretary), and Roger W. Robinson Jr. (Asst. Treasurer).
Comparing the financials of the Carthage Foundation to that of the Allegheny Foundation we see that the Carthage Foundation has assets roughly half of that of the Allegheny Foundation, yet gives more than twice the amount in grants. This pattern in disbursements can also be seen in the annual reports from both organizations in 2003, 2002, and 2001.

Lacking the geographical restrictions (seemingly ignored) that we see in the Allegheny Foundation, the Carthage Foundation gives grants to right-wings causes across the country. The Allegheny Institute for Public Policy, a recipient of a $50,000 grant from the Allegheny Foundation also received an additional $110,000 from the Carthage Foundation.  Other causes that the Carthage Foundation supports include the following groups:  

Note that I am listing these groups only to give you, the reader, an idea of how much Mr. Scaife influences the American political process by way of his grants

The American Civil Rights Institute $40,000, this anti-affirmative action organization was behind Prop. 209 in California

The American Civil Rights Union $100,000, consider this organization the anti-ACLU, ALRU as they prefer to be called, lists several notable figures on its board:  Ed Meese, Robert Bork, and Ken Tomlinson.

The American Enterprise Institute $300,000

American Foreign Policy Council $125,000

American Jewish Committee $60,000

America's Survival Inc. $35,000, anti-UN organization headed by Cliff Kincaid also of the oh so mis-named Accuracy In Media

The Association of Literary Scholars and Critics $30,000, a conservative literary group.

The Atlas Economic Research Foundation $50,000, a conservative economic think-tank

The Capital Research Center $35,000, a right-wing group that studies philanthropies from our side, excpet they get paid to do it LOL

The Cato Institute $65,000

The Center For Individual Rights $150,000, a right-wing legal outfit working to protect the rights of the oppressed white christian male

The Center for Media and Public Affairs $100,000, the right's bash the media superstore

The Cinema Foundation, Inc. $50,000 no link found

The Collegiate Network Inc. $90,000 The self-proclaimed home of conservative college journalism a division of the Intercollegiate Studies Institute

The Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow $80,000 an "environmentalist" website supporting views such as Irradiation of food for the poor, it's a good thing, SUV's good for the environment, and my favorite The Rainforest who needs it anyways.

The Criminal Justice Legal Foundation $25,000

The Defenders of Property Rights $100,000 look for more headed to these guys post-Kelo

The Diversity Alliance for a Sustainable America $35,000 an anti-imigration group

The Federalist Society $100,000, another cause celebre of the right

Federation for American Immigration Reform $250,000 another anti-immigration advocacy group

The Foreign Policy Research Institute $25,000

The Foundation for Cultural Review, Inc. $26,000 no link found

The Foundation for Research on Economics and the Environment $70,000 an oil industry backed "environmental group"

Free Congress Foundation $200,000 Paul Weyrich's twisted vision of an American theocracy

The George C. Marshall Institute $35,000

High Frontier $50,000 a truly scary group still living in the Cold War advocating SDI

The Institute for Foreign Policy Analysis $150,000

The Institute for Health Freedome $100,000 right-wing public health institute

The Institute for International Studies $60,000 unclear exactly who this group is

The Institute for Research on the Economics of Taxation $150,000

The Institute on Religion and Democracy $75,000 better named the Institute for Theocracy but I digress

The Institute on Religion and Public Life $75,000 blending conservative Catholic and neo-con outlooks everywhere

The Intercollegiate Studies Institute $350,000 I could write four diaries on these guys alone

The Jamestown Foundation $125,000 Still supporting Soviet defectors

Judicial Watch $375,000 a well-known organization

The Landmark Legal Foundation $250,000

The Maldon Institute $460,000 note that no website for the Maldon could be found. This is a subversive organization known for falsely accusing people of being rioters such during the RNC convention, more info available here.

The Morley Publishing Group $25,000 which publishes the periodical Crisis

National Center for Public Policy Research $50,000 a conservative think-tank

National Defense University Foundation $50,000

National Institute for Public Policy $75,000

National Legal and Policy Center $100,000 anti-union, anti-civil rights right-wingers

National Strategy Forum $10,000

New Citizenship Project $85,000 brought to you buy PNAC

Patrick Henry Center $25,000



Note this list is not a complete list of the Carthage Foundation's 2004 grants. What I hope that the reader takes from this, is the need of an active, activist community to stand together. As we will see in forthcoming diaries, the rise of the dominance of right-wing think-tanks, and the relative lack of equivalents among those of us in the left, is a direct result of the investment of a few individuals, which make up the largest portion of their funding.

The consequence of this lack is that when John (or Jane) Q. Public, turn on CNN after a day of work, they are greeted with "experts" from such important sounding organizations as the Free Congress Foundation, or the National Center for Public Policy Research. With a relative lack of equivalents among the left, our message is being drowned out.



Forthcoming:
Part 3 The Sarah Scaife Foundation
Part 4 Richard Mellon Scaife, The Man Behind the Curtain

Update: My computer problems from earlier today seem to be solved thanks to all of you who read yesterday's enstallment.

Monday, July 18, 2005

My cousin died tonight

He killed himself. I have no clue as to why. He had just gotten married (his second) to a very nice lady, who seemed to care deeply about him. He just got back from Scotland on his honeymoon a couple of months ago. I guess, I'm just confused as to what brings on that kind of desperation in a person. I will always remember his wedding, which can be best described as a renaissance fair meets a scottish wedding meets a traditional southern wedding. Needless to say the Baptists in the family were scratchin' their heads when the best man walked down the aisle with a huge broad sword strapped to his back. More than a few people didn't quite get the bagpipes either, but I have to admire he and his widow's commitment to have a wedding on their own terms. My fiance, took the most beautiful picture of the two of them after the ceremony; she definitely beat all the prints the "wedding photographer" managed to produce, we got hour long developing and blew up the real nice ones as a gift. Just confused.

Monday, July 11, 2005

Deconstructing the Scaife Foundation (Part 1 of 4)

For those of you who have the stomach to spend time in the right-wing blogosphere, I am certain that you have come across the demonization of Mr. Soros. His name has been picked up by the public at large, but there hasn't been any real investigation into the backgrounds of the public policy foundations of the right-wing and its directors. It is time for that to change. For those of you who are interested in further background into the funding of the right-wing I invite you to check-out http://www.mediatransparency.org/ .

We begin with the Scaife Foundations. The Scaife Foundations are divided into three separate organizations, the Allegheny Foundation, the Carthage Foundation, and the Sarah Scaife Foundation. From The Scaife Foundation Website, "The Allegheny Foundation concentrates its giving in the Western Pennsylvania area and confines most of its grant awards to programs for historic preservation, civic development and education. The Foundation does not make grants to individuals. Proposals for the following are usually declined: event sponsorships, endowments, capital campaigns, renovations or government agencies." The Allegheny Foundation lists only two officers on its most recent annual report 2004 Annual Report(.pdf), Richard M. Scaife (Chairman) and Matthew A. Groll (Executive Director). The Foundation lists over $43,000,000 in total assets and presented grants in excess of $1,500,000 in 2004.
The Allegheny Foundation's policy statement would seem to indicate a non-partisan historical focus, yet in 2004 some of the notable recipients of grants include the Allegheny Institute for Public Policy a recipient of a $50,000 grant which in its mission statement calls itself,
"a non-profit research and education organization. Our mission is to defend the interests of taxpayers, citizens and businesses against an increasingly burdensome and intrusive government. To that end, we will formulate and advocate public policies that roll back the size and scope of local government as well as create a more accountable government. Our efforts will be guided by the principles of free enterprise, property rights, civil society and individual freedom that are the bedrock upon which this nation was founded." The fact that this seems to fall outside the historical raison d'ĂȘtre of Allegheny loses its importance when one studies the list of Board Members of the Allegheny Institute. Prominently listed are Michael Gleba Executive Vice President of the Sarah Scaife Foundation as a Member of the Board of Trustees, and we find on the Board of Advisors Mr. Matthew Groll, the aforementioned Executive Director of the Allegheny Foundation. Additional grants totaling $35,000 went to the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) a right-wing organization which writes legislation making its way throughout legislatures across the country. A $225,000 grant to proven hack and liar David Horowitz and his Center for the Study of Popular Culture. The new cool right-wing eugenics program Children Requiring a Caring Kommunity (C.R.A.C.K.), the program which pays drug-addicted women to become sterilized but offers no drug-treatment per se, was a recipient of $50,000 from the Allegheny Foundation, further information on CRACK is available here. Another aside on CRACK is that its a California based "charity" (I use that term very loosly when attached to this organization) far outside the range of Western Penn, but I digress... Addtional monies were given to the publisher of that incredible read "It Takes a Family," by Sen. Rick "Man-Dog" Santorum (R-PA), the Intercollegiate Studies Institute. In all fairness, it's entirely plausible that we wouldn't be blessed with such an interesting read without the help of the ISI.
In conclusion, the Allegheny Foundation, like many Scaife foundations, as readers of the forthcoming diaries will see, plays fast and loose with its own mission statement by giving to causes outside of its stated purpose.
ForthcomingPart 2 The Carthage FoundationPart 3 The Sarah Scaife FoundationPart 4 Richard Mellon Scaife, The Man Behind the Curtain

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

"Religious right should aid recruiting."

Gleefully Lifted from Pam's House Blend

Robert N. Conley of Chandlersville, OH sent in a slamming letter to his local paper, the Zanesville Times-Recorder, "Religious right should aid recruiting." I was laughing out loud.
Army recruiting quotas are not being met. Now, in this time of need, the nation's focus should rightfully focus on the clerics of the religious right: Dobson, Robertson, Falwell, Parsley, etc. Can they focus? Can they refocus? Can they get the job done? Perhaps many of these clerics are hesitant to focus on military recruiting because they are former unfocused draft-dodgers. They need to get past their unfocused youthful follies. They need to refocus their focus on military recruiting.

According to religious-right reports (not propaganda), at least two to three million potential recruits have attended taxpayer-funded meetings, where they have "signed" one of the most important of all pledges: No sex before marriage. These are ideal military recruits. Certainly, the clerics can make changes where the lady pledges can focus on appropriate gender-specific tasks under the focus of their natural masters. This clerical focus should focus exclusively on the Army and Marine Corps, where all the killing is focused. Let those other people (you know who I mean) populate the Navy and the Air Force.

Yes, it is important to get everyone in the world to admit that the entire universe is 6006 (some silly heretics say 6022, others 6044) years old. And, yes, it is very important to do away with all science, and all of its complications, by just letting our all-knowing clerics explain everything to us by using the simplistic, catch-all concept of "intelligent" design. And, of course, it is important to replace all judges with robots by Robertson.

But, right now, the focus needs to be on military recruiting. Our country needs to come first. It's time for our religious right clerics to focus on military recruiting. In brief, it's time to refocus the focus.

Monday, June 13, 2005

Let's have the gays were little pink armbands... Sad

Christian Coalition: Gays Should Wear Warning Labels
New York City) The leader of a conservative Christian lobby group says that gays should be required to wear warning labels.

"We put warning labels on cigarette packs because we know that smoking takes one to two years off the average life span, yet we 'celebrate' a lifestyle that we know spreads every kind of sexually transmitted disease and takes at least 20 years off the average life span according to the 2005 issue of the revered scientific journal Psychological Reports," said Rev. Bill Banuchi, executive director of the New York Christian Coalition.

The journal regularly publishes articles described by many mainstream psychologists as misleading and faulty. The homosexuality morbidity study was conducted by the conservative anti-gay Family Research Institute.

Banuchi called LGBT Pride celebrations held in New Paltz, north of New York City, and other areas of the country on the weekend "sad".

He called on people to "pray for those who are deceived by the lies of popular culture, who are caught up in a destructive lifestyle, and for the children who are being zealously evangelized by radical homosexuals."

It is not the first time gays have been told they should wear labels. In Nazi Germany gays were forced to wear the pink triangle to differentiate them from other internees at concentration camps.

(snip)

"I just don't know what anybody was thinking of. My jaw dropped when I heard it," Dan Berkowitz, a member of the West Hollywood Lesbian and Gay Advisory Board, told the West Hollywood Independent. "I'm sure she is a very nice girl and her mother is a very nice woman, but what they have to do with gay pride in West Hollywood or anywhere else is utterly beyond me."


Now let me start by saying that I'm not gay, but if you don't find this troubling something is wrong with you.

A truly dangerous thing is occuring in this country, and this is but a symptom. Conservatives are not just trying to destroy the civil rights of homosexuals, they are trying to roll back the advances of the Enlightenment. Schools are being formed to train students not in knowledge and truth but in rhetoric and ideology. Case in point an Ohio State dissertation defense for a noted intelligent designer. It was called off when it was discovered that his dissertation committee didn't have any experts in the field pertaining to his work.

And from Stephen Jay Gould's Website more background on which rock these people crawled out from under.

My point is that a line in the sand has to be drawn. The words "First they came for the Jews..." have never rang truer. The education system in this country is being subverted, and knowledge and reason are being replaced with faith (which don't get me wrong is a perfectly fine thing to have, I myself consider myself Christian) and ideology, neither of which belong in an educational setting (except maybe a theology class, but I digress).

Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

Presidential Guest Mary Carey's Work

For those who do not know, our President is having an extra-special guest at an official RNC fundraising dinner. To celebrate Ms. Carey's work I've included some links... NONE OF THESE LINKS ARE WORK SAFE

Tasteful Nudity
More Tasteful Nudity
The Official Website
Batteries Not Included

Now when you consider the cost of security, transportation, etc. for the president it's nice to see our tax dollars being used so wisely...