Left-Wing Foundations: A Quiet Leviathan


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Reprinted with permission from the Washington Examiner

The New Leviathan: How the Left-wing Money Machine Shapes American Politics and Threatens America’s Future, written by David Horowitz and Jacob Laksin, is now available. To order a copy, click here.

Judging by his campaign’s recent attacks on Bain Capital, President Obama is positioning himself as the tribune of the 99 percent against the Republican 1 percent. This is a time-honored Democratic tactic that runs from Andrew Jackson’s self-description as champion of the “common man” standing up to the “moneyed capitalists,” all the way through Al Gore’s presidential nomination in 2000, when he framed the Republican-Democrat divide this way: “They’re for the powerful; we’re for the people!”

Yet that flattering narrative is at odds with history. Jackson, despite his humble roots, was a man of considerable personal wealth. His rhetoric about representing those without power or political connections belied a cruel indifference to the plight of powerless groups like Native Americans. Gore’s populism similarly masked his upper-class pedigree and his net worth, well in excess of $100 million. Obama himself, with estimated assets of more than $10 million, is an unlikely epitome of the everyman.

What’s true of the Democratic Party’s standard-bearers is true of the party and the Left more broadly. As we detail in our new book, “The New Leviathan,” Democrats and their progressive core represent America’s social and cultural elites and constitute the wealthiest, best-organized and most economically powerful political force in American history.

Left-wing foundations exemplify this clout. As of 2009, the financial assets of the 115 major tax-exempt foundations of the Left added up to nearly $105 billion. That is over 10 times greater than the financial assets of the 75 major foundations of the Right.

Not that such disparities have deterred progressives from portraying themselves as underdogs. People for the American Way, in an oft-heard liberal lament, insists that conservative foundations are a singular force in American political life, unmatched in “their sheer size and concentration” and in their willingness to “promote a highly politicized agenda by funding a broad range of organizations.” Our findings suggest that this complaint is a reversal of reality.

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  • StephenD

    What else is new? It always comes down to the few elites lording it over the masses. They hi-jack terms and we are to believe they are merely a representative of us when they are want to be kings.

  • umustbkidding

    A great example of how our government officials get the money to govern against the will of the people.

  • Chuck Mogged

    I cannot wait to buy this book! If the Republicans can prevail this November, one key spending reduction strategy must be to defund the many leftist organizations feeding at the public trough. Let's increase liberty while breaking the Left's rice bowls – much as Wisconsin is doing by eliminating automatic union dues paycheck deductions.

    • aharris

      It's been tried with ACORN, and they just reformed. The political machine model is alive and well.

      • choi

        They did NOT" Reform",they changed names.

        • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nLNn2YflwNs Roger

          Then the new name should be defunded.

          And there are a lot of them like Media Matters that need to lose their non profit status.

  • aharris

    The best we can do is tell the truth often enough with the facts to back it up, and maybe someday, it will start to stick. Citizens United was a help, but even then, the resources are still lopsided.

  • Guest

    If we keep this kind of information in the major social media such as Facebook, we may be able to get the message out to the younger people who are being most effected by the liberal money machine.

  • clarespark

    The liberal foundations after the second world war went into high gear, founding Pacifica Radio among their other attempts to put a labor-friendly face on business. I wrote about their machinations here, which are shocking. See http://clarespark.com/2010/07/04/pacifica-radio-a… and pick those blogs that demonstrate the authoritarian character of these major figures in American history. Title: Pacifica Radio and the Progressive Movement. Includes my personal memoir as briefly a leader in the Los Angeles radio station (KPFK).

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nLNn2YflwNs Roger

    The people who founded them, like Ford would go ballistic if he saw how his money is being spent to attack the things that generated it to begin with.

    • fightwarnotwars

      Yeah Henry Ford, the nazi sympathizer and raving antisemite, his opinion really matters.

      • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nLNn2YflwNs Roger

        The Ford foundation doesn't seem to mind spending his money, now does it?

        • Alinsky USA HERO

          Why haven't you ever had a girlfriend ride with you in your Ford Challenger Roger?

          • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nLNn2YflwNs Roger

            And why do you think sexual harassment is a way behave?

            Oh BTW, Ford doesn't make the Challenge, they make the mustang.

            You simply know so little, it's amazing.

          • Alinsky USA HERO

            Do you drive a Dodge because you are always dodging the question of whether you have a girlfriend ?

            So why hasn't a girl ever been in your Dodge Challenger Roger?

          • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nLNn2YflwNs Roger

            Why would I discuss it with you?

            Sexual harassment is only going to show why I don't say anything.

          • Alinsky USA HERO

            Asking a guy if he has a girlfriend isn't harassment. You just don't want to admit you are a homo.

            Why not tell us if you have a girlfriend so that I can stop asking you once and for all?

            I will never ask you again if you just say Yes or No.

          • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nLNn2YflwNs Roger

            Read through your comment stream.

            Hundreds of times you have harassed me about sex.

            And like an angry child wanting a candy bar at the store, you're just sure if you cry loud enough you'll get what you want.

            It isn't going to work.

          • Alinsky USA HERO

            You are making this about sex freak.

            I just want to know if you have a girlfriend, and want to expose you as a homo by making you dodge the question in front of everybody.

          • Anused

            What's your problem Alinsky ? You looking for a date ?

    • ajnn

      i do not understand.

      why do we care about the sexual orientation of 'roger' ?

      alinsky – are you a racist homophobe ?

  • http://www.maghrebchristians.com Youssef

    Authorities in Mauritania have always denied the presence of slavery in their country but an article in Le Monde late last month by Christophe Châtelot proved otherwise.

    Read more: http://www.maghrebchristians.com/2012/06/12/mauri

    Youssef

  • fightwarnotwars

    10 Errors, Distortions, And Falsehoods In David Horowitz's The New Leviathan – http://bit.ly/MDRNeP

  • Jim_C

    Has the influence of money in American politics fundamentally changed in 200 years, and if so, how? Do large sums of money pose a threat to democracy, or are they just an intrinsic part of the process? Is it even necessarily "bad" to have big money donors; or is it "good" that entities who have a large stake in national policy to have to "invest" to get their desired results?

    If these questions aren't being asked and honestly answered, who cares about some book that obviously starts with an agenda and then gets filled in with convenient facts? So people can play the "hypocrite" game–the easiest, most brainless way to think about politics? Wow, the democrats have big money donors, too? Is that supposed to be revelatory? or contradict some prevailing wisdom?

    How about we have election cycles that aren't two year-long dog and pony shows? How about we limit the entire process from primaries-to-main to 6 months or less? How about we allow private fundraising only for primaries, but set aside equal amounts of tax money for way briefer main election

    I f'n HATE our election cycles–the stupid filler news of gaffes and zingers, idiotic camapign events, baby kissing, etc. I don't know anyone who would have thought, for example, the Republican primaries this time were too short of "just right." It used to be people had to get on trains and make the rounds. Why now? Just get on TV a few times and be done with it!

  • JackOfClubsBlog

    This article would benefit greatly from some graphs.

  • Anused

    Some of the nation's largest and richest companies, including Wal-Mart, Koch Industries and AT&T, have joined forces to invest millions of dollars each year to promote the careers of thousands of state legislators and secure passage of legislation that puts corporate interests ahead of the interests of ordinary Americans.

    The American Legislative Exchange Council, also known as ALEC, counts among its members some 2,000 state legislators and corporate executives. They sit side-by-side and collaborate to draft "model" bills that reach into areas of American life ranging from voting rights to environmental protection. They work in concert to get those bills passed in statehouses across the country.

    Some of the nation's largest and richest companies, including Wal-Mart, Koch Industries and AT&T, have joined forces to invest millions of dollars each year to promote the careers of thousands of state legislators and secure passage of legislation that puts corporate interests ahead of the interests of ordinary Americans.

    • ajnn

      is this illegal ? is it even 'bad' ?

      do they not have a constutional right to spend their own money in their own interests if they do so legally ?factual information not an opportunity to 'shame' the

      horowitz's point is that the left has much, much more money and influence than the right. again, this is factual info, not an opportunity to 'shame' the left.

      • Amused

        I would pose THE SAME QUESTION to you regarding Democratic fundraising . YOUR argument and that of Horowitz is HYPOCRITICAL . For every organization , private citizen , corporation , whatever , that is contributing to the Democrats , there is the same doing so for the Republicans . Stop kiddig yourself and insulting everyone's intelligence by such BIASED statements .You live by your REPO/CON MEMES . They epitomy of hypocrisy .

    • Asher

      More like Target, Home Depot, and Sears!

  • Oleg

    One thing that is not mentioned in all of this is the reason for the proliferation of so called "Progressive " advocacy groups. The reason so many exist is no because foundation like the Open Society Institute, or the Tides Foundation have lots of money to spend the reason is to give the illusion of popular support behind the public policies that they advocate. If we take those 117 open borders and amnesty groups and compare their mission statements we will find that at least 75% or more of these are identical to each other aside from the letterhead and who is at the top. If lets say one of these groups touted a membership of 10,000 members, and compared the names on that list to another similar group claiming to have 12,000 members, we would find that a good 80% of the membership on those two lists overlaps with each other, and those that don't overlap with those of some other group. So between the two they claim to have 22,000 members when in reality 17,600 of that 22,000 belong to both organizations, it's an accounting trick they play to make it look like huge numbers of people support their point of view by counting the same people over and over again as members of cookie cutter advocacy groups, its a shell game.
    But the thing is it doesn't stop with the membership lists of groups in a particular policy area like pro open borders type groups, you will find the same names listed as members of radical environmental groups, feminazi groups, anti Isreal groups, food "justice" groups, pro abortion groups, and so on, and so on, just to make it look like the Left has a plurality of support. Many of these organization also have the same persons sitting on their board of directors but in different chairs, the president of ABC group will sit as a director on the board of XYZ group, the treasurer of XYZ groups will sit as a CEO of the UVW group. This is why the Left has hundreds more groups then the right has, they just keep inventing them, but they are all the same ideas with teh same people funding them and the same people running them, it's a giant get rich quick industry based on fraud.

    • ajnn

      from your lips to g-d's ears !!!!!!!!!!!

    • Bob

      Excellent point, you put in writing what I was thinking.

      Let me add that when a conservative politician or group says something that the progressives are opposed to, there are statements & press releases from let's say women's group 10 different groups will simultaneously attack, when in fact it's the same few people running the 10 organization some even in the Same location, & the media knows that it's BS but they report it as if the whole country is outraged, that is because the media are part of the progressive team.

      We know this, the problem most Americans do not, & take everything face value.

  • truebearing

    The problem with fighting the Left is that they obsess over political power 24 hours a day, every day. They invest their money, or should i say our money, in endless schemes to get more and more power. The Right wants to make money and spend it on a variety of things, but doesn't live for politics. That is why we are seeing this advantage grow for the Left.

    Marx coined the term "capitalism" as a pejorative term for people who acquire wealth but Marxists are capitalists too, except that their capital is political power. They want bigger and bigger returns on their investment into power until they have a monopoly.. As capitalists and freedom lovers we need to recognize that they are far greedier for power than we realize and will do anything to get it. We can't ever drop our guard with this power-mad cult.

  • Amused

    Yea , just like the Republicans .LOL…maybe they're taking their que's ffrom Republicans eh ?

  • Amused

    Shameless hypocrits -ALL .

  • Asher

    This book will be a real eye opener. It is not about just the Democrat party, it is about money that is being poured into an agenda and it has been going on since Roosevelt to take this country toward full blown communism. Know who your enemy is, their tactics, and fight them

  • Ronald Johnston

    I am going to unload this old computer with microsoft XP. It is a nightmare anyway. I will never buy anything else from microsoft!!!! That goes for Ford products also. These people are pure evil!!!!