The months of March and April were highlighted by not only op-eds and radio/TV interviews but also by syndicated media appearances from Virginia to Alaska. As usual, our topics of discussion were as varied as the work we do—the Supreme Court confirmation hearing of Ketanji Brown Jackson, States Newsroom and activism coming to local newsrooms in Alaska, the eagle-killing “conservationists” who hate nuclear energy, and philanthropy’s new defensive position—all made appearances over the last two months.
As our expertise in “dark money” and the funding behind policy activism grows, so too does our reach. Our work exposing the influencers who shape our politics and culture is being cited by state attorneys general as well as local reporters trying to make sense of what they’re seeing in their communities. Our ability to appeal to all interested parties is one we take seriously.
Please see below what we consider the best media hits of March and April for 2022.
“Ketanji Brown Jackson, Spiking Crime Rates, and a Gullible GOP”
Townhall, Sarah Lee (Op-ed), March 30, 2022
When Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson failed to outline a lucid judicial philosophy in her Senate confirmation hearings in late March, news outlets like USA Today were quick to celebrate her reticence as a refusal to “take the bait” and “let anyone else define her.”
But written testimony submitted by Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall suggests that a lack of judicial philosophy is not only not a good thing (a view shared by legal scholars like Jonathan Turley of George Washington University Law School) but that Jackson may in fact have a judicial philosophy—and that may be even worse.
“Progressive District Attorneys Are Making Our Cities Unsafe”
RealClearPolitics, Jason Miyares, March 24, 2022
A new report from Capital Research revealed that progressives have spent nearly $30 million backing liberal activist district attorneys in over 20 communities, including big cities like Los Angeles and New York City, northern Virginia suburbs outside Washington, D.C., and rural communities in Georgia and Mississippi.
In Manhattan, the radical left spent over $1 million electing Alvin Bragg who, shortly after being sworn in, released a memo stating that his office would not seek any prison sentences for crimes such as armed robbery, drug dealing, and burglaries. Consequently, 72 of the 77 police precincts have seen an increase in crime; in Manhattan, NYPD CompStat numbers reveal that burglaries, grand larcenies, and felony assaults are rising at a rapid pace. These crimes not only violate decency in daily life—they’re also gateway offenses for people who become career criminals.
“Mark Zuckerberg Helped Fund the 2020 Election. Now Republicans Seek to Ban Future Grants”
The Mercury News/Bloomberg, Ryan Teague Beckwith, March 30, 2022
Lindsey Curnutte, a spokeswoman for Heritage Action, said that even if the grants weren’t intended to sway the outcome of the election, the involvement of private money should raise questions.
“We want to make sure that voters feel confident in their vote and that they don’t feel like a private outside organization is influencing elections,” she said. The grants were also a target of the Thomas More Society, which filed the lawsuits, and the Capital Research Center and the Republican State Leadership Committee, which have publicized the bills to grassroots conservatives.
“Foundations Should Disclose Investments and De-Politicize Giving”
RealClearPolicy, Robert Stilson (Op-ed), March 3, 2022
An increasing number of private foundations are inserting sociopolitical considerations into their investment portfolios, just as many already do in their grantmaking. Those that choose to do so should be prepared to weather any public scrutiny that their investments attract. The problem is that some foundations do not publicly disclose their investments in the same way that they disclose their grants.
Last year, Ford Foundation president Darren Walker announced that “going forward, the foundation’s endowment will not invest in any fossil-fuel-related industries.” With over $15.7 billion in net assets as of its most recent tax filing, Ford’s decision to divest from conventional energy sources attracted considerable attention.
“Private School Parents Face Difficulty Voicing Opinions, Advocacy Group Says”
Sinclair/The National Desk (Syndicated), Jillian Smith, March 25, 2022
A group of independent school moms called Undercover Mothers, which describes itself as a “mom collective,” says they are protecting their children from the curriculums of the Regional and National Association of Independent Schools.
“For schools, accreditation really matters. And the most elite accreditation really matters for them to maintain their prestige and a variety of other benefits,” said Scott Walter, president of the Capital Research Center.
Walter says these parents may have a harder time being vocal about their concerns and getting answers about what’s being taught and why because independent schools do not have to disclose certain information.
“Carjackings and Vehicle Thefts Skyrocketing in Major American Cities, Insurance Group Says”– Sinclair: The National Desk (Syndicated), Zachary rogers, March 2/22
Parker Thayer, a research assistant at the Capital Research Center, says the uptick in carjackings in several major cities can be attributed to progressive prosecutors, whose soft-on-crime policies have allegedly emboldened criminals.
The common denominator in these major cities where car thefts and carjackings are soaring is progressive prosecutors who take it upon themselves to ‘end mass incarceration’ and ‘promote equity’ by selectively enforcing the law and treating hardened criminals with kid gloves,” Thayer told TND.
“Scott Walter on Zuck Bucks and the 2020 Election”
Bannon’s War Room, Scott Walter (Guest), April 8, 2022
CRC President Scott Walter talks to Steve Bannon about Zuck Buck’s and the Center’s work on CTCL, and what was used as part of the research into Mollie Hemingway’s book, “Rigged.”
“Follow the Money—Zuck Bucks”
Full Measure with Sharyl Attkinsson, Scott Walter (Guest), April 10, 2022
Sharyl: Other than the point that you made where you’re saying the money was funneled through organizations that are not supposed to be involved in politics, is there anything inherently illegal about a group giving money to elections causes in states and cities?
Scott Walter: At the time, it was perfectly legal for a charity to give money to a government office. And they tried to pretend like it was, “Oh, we’re just masks and Plexiglas and whatnot.” That was the tiny fraction of the money. But there were no laws against that because nobody dreamt of doing this. So that part, the giving the money there, was legal.
“Philanthropy on the Defensive”
The Giving Review, Mike Hartmann, April 25, 2022
Establishment philanthropy in America is on the defensive—as it should be. Measured in terms of its size, the philanthropic sector is big and getting bigger; this is not necessarily a bad development in itself, but the sector’s growth in recent decades has been striking. Ideologically, the largest foundations’ policy-oriented grantmaking is lopsidedly liberal and getting more so—or, in the current jargon, it is “woke” and getting “woker.” Most troubling, perhaps, is that philanthropic organizations have become more and more politicized. This trend is increasingly in tension with, if not outright contrary to, that which is supposed to be the purpose of their tax-advantaged status: charity.
“Watch Out Alaska, More Partisan News Is Coming Your Way”
Must Read Alaska, Hayden Ludwig (Op-ed), April 14, 2022
If you haven’t heard of States Newsroom, you soon will—the network of left-leaning outlets posing as just-the-facts news sites is expanding in force, with new offices in Juneau, Anchorage, and elsewhere in the state.
Though it presents itself as apolitical, States Newsroom is actually the invention of the most powerful liberal lobbying force in Washington, DC: Arabella Advisors.
“Supporters of Wind Farms over Nuclear Power Are Eagle Killers, Not Conservationists”
The Federalist, Ken Braun (Op-ed), April 18, 2022
A March 2021 Department of Energy report stated that a “typical” nuclear plant “needs a little more than 1 square mile to operate,” while “wind farms require 360 times more land area to produce the same amount of electricity and solar photovoltaic plants require 75 times more space.”
Supporters of wind energy are not conservationists. There’s nothing “clean” about energy that devours hundreds of times the land needed by another carbon-free option and then needlessly wipes out eagles as a cost of doing business.