Stop me before I donate again

Leonard Harlan, former chairman, Castle Harlan, Fleur Harlan, board member, Manhattan Institute and Bernard Schwartz, chairman and CEO of Bls Investments, attend the Film Society of Lincoln Center tribute to Catherine Deneuve in New York, U.S., on Monday, April 2, 2012. Photographer: Amanda Gordon/Bloomberg *** Local Caption *** TKTK

Bloomberg has an interesting piece on left-wing donor Bernard Schwartz today that highlights the absurdity of so-called campaign finance reform and the Left’s crazy ongoing assault on Citizens United.

The headline is, Top Clinton Donor Wants A Law Against $1 Million Gifts Like His.

Mickey Mouse figurines and photos of grinning politicians surrounded the 90-year-old investor Bernard Schwartz in his Manhattan office on Thursday. Four days earlier, new federal filings showed he gave $1 million to a super-PAC supporting presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, making him one of her top backers and part of the campaign-finance system that her rival Bernie Sanders calls undemocratic and corrupt.

Schwartz, a former head of satellite maker Loral Space & Communications who’s no stranger to hefty political donations and was once a target of suspicion about the favors they buy, mostly agrees with the Vermont senator.

“PACs are a bad thing, it distorts the political process,” said Schwartz, who now manages his money as chairman of BLS Investments. “Rich people have the opportunity to get access.”

 Besides his August gift to Priorities USA Action, which supports Clinton, Schwartz has sent about $2.5 million of soft money to Democratic groups since 2010, according to Federal Election Commission filings. That year, a federal appeals court helped lift caps on what donors can give to some political action committees. Schwartz wants new limits, but he chuckled when asked how that clashed with his own generosity. He isn’t holding back, he said, as long as supporters of the rival party aren’t. […]
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Soros Luvs Hillary


Radical philanthropist George Soros gave $8 million to pro-Hillary Clinton super PACs in 2015, Kenneth P. Vogel reports in Politico.

Six million of those dollars were donated in December. That tidy sum went to Priorities USA Action, which was part of the Brocktopus when it was founded. (The neologism refers to the network of activist groups and PACs created by sleazy ex-journalist David Brock. Brock severed ties with the outfit last year.)

Left-wingers pay attention to Soros’s campaign donations.

As Vogel writes:

Soros is seen as a bellwether among rich Democrats. He is one of the few liberals who has shown a willingness to drop eight-figures in an election cycle, having donated more than $20 million in 2004 to groups that tried to oust then-President George W. Bush. After the failure of that effort, Soros dialed back his big-money political spending.

Despite intense courtship in 2012, Soros gave only $1 million to Priorities USA, which at the time was dedicated to supporting President Obama’s reelection. That year he told a close Clinton ally that he regretted supporting Obama over her in the 2008 primaries and praised Clinton for giving him an open door to discuss policy, according to emails released last month by the State Department.

Priorities USA was among the many super PACs assiduously courting him heading into 2016, and his huge check is sure to be interpreted as an encouraging sign headed into an election cycle in which conservative billionaires are expected to donate more than $1 billion to super PACs and other unlimited money groups.

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Philanthropy Notes: January 2016

For donors interested in education reform, the Philanthropy Roundtable has a new “Wise Giver’s Guide” that focuses on how donors of all religions and none can best support Catholic schools. Those schools, especially in the inner city, often serve mostly poor, non-Catholic students, and they help make the case for school choice: the idea that all students and parents should have the freedom to choose the best schools for their situation, and therefore that all schools should be forced to compete for private and government funds. This guidebook, available at, has lots of practical advice for donors who want to join in the innovative progress that has been achieved in recent years by cutting-edge funders like equity-capital pioneer Russ Carson of Partnership for Inner-city Education and Rob Birdsell, B.J. Cassin, and John Eriksen of the Drexel Fund. As the book’s editor Karl Zinsmeister observes, a sector of schooling that not long ago looked in danger of going extinct has been saved by “entrepreneurs who know that competition is the best route to success,” and “donors who are willing to share their wealth with schools that improve lives.”

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Briefly Noted: January 2016

President Obama’s Chicago-based nonprofit group, Organizing for Action (OfA), has trained “more than 10,000 leftist organizers, who, in turn, are training more than 2 million youths in [Saul] Alinsky street tactics,” according to the Hoover Institution’s Paul Sperry. This “army of social justice bullies” will carry on Obama’s campaign to fundamentally transform America after he leaves office in January 2017, continuing his push to punish America for its imaginary sins and to promote manufactured controversies. Some observers have compared OfA to the government-supported goon squads that Venezuela’s Nicolas Maduro and Cuba’s Castro brothers use to harass and intimidate their domestic opponents. OfA units brought muscle to the 2011-12 fight in Wisconsin over laws that reformed the state’s out-of-control government labor unions. OfA has also bludgeoned Democrats that Obama deemed insufficiently left-wing, especially red-state congressional Democrats who had been wavering on Obamacare.

The terrorist-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) wants to make America safe for Sharia law. So it’s not surprising that on Dec. 2 after 14 Americans were gunned down in San Bernardino, Calif.—an event the Heritage Foundation labeled the “75th Islamist-inspired terrorist attack or plot in the U.S.” since Sept. 11, 2001—CAIR tried to grab hold of the media narrative. CAIR, which the United Arab Emirates designated a year ago as a terrorist group, set to work crafting a storyline about the mass-murdering Muslim married couple, Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik to ensure Islam wouldn’t be blamed for this latest massacre committed in its name. CAIR-LA Executive Director Hussam Ayloush, who is also an Executive Board member of the California Democratic Party, first played dumb, saying at a press conference, “We don’t know the motive. Is it work, rage-related? Is it mental illness? Is it extreme ideology? At this point it’s really unknown to us and it is too soon for us to speculate.” Two days later on CNN, Ayloush changed his tune, blaming America for the shootings. “Let’s not forget that some of our own foreign policy, as Americans, as the West, have fueled that extremism.”

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David Bowie Understood the Vital Import of Intellectual Property

A wonderful, timely column from Seton Motley of Less Government:


David Bowie passed away on Sunday. To say he was an innovative guy – would be the largest of understatements. He created, imbued and embodied multiple music personas – reinventing himself over and over again. He parlayed his multiplicative rock music success into fashion icon status – and numerous Hollywood and Broadway gigs.

All of which barely touches on his inventive approach to the business of being David Bowie. He was an avant-garde entrepreneur – who saw around the curve of the Earth just a little bit further than most people. He created out of whole cloth ways to make being David Bowie even more highly lucrative – and allow others to share in the earnings. And he intuitively understood how technological advances would help – and hurt – the business model of music and all things intellectual property.

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Philanthropy Notes: December 2015

GOP presidential candidate Ben Carson is proposing eliminating all tax deductions, including those for charitable contributions and mortgage interest payments, as part of his flat income tax plan. He is the only Republican in the race to propose dropping the charitable deduction. Carson said charities have no reason to worry, because under his plan Americans will have more money to spend and will be more inclined to give. “The fact of the matter is people had homes before 1913 when we introduced the federal income tax,” he said. “We had churches before that, and charitable organizations before that.” The Alliance for Charitable Reform and other nonprofit trade associations oppose abolishing the charitable deduction.

So much for Google’s “Don’t Be Evil” motto: The company’s philanthropic arm is giving $2.35 million to race-baiting community organizers, including $500,000 to help the Black Lives Matter movement. Presumably, the money is intended as community outreach: critics say only 2 percent of Google’s workforce is black. The extreme-left Ella Baker Center for Human Rights of Oakland, Calif., co-founded by self-described “communist” and former Obama administration official Van Jones, is to receive $1 million from, half of which will go to co-founder Patrisse Cullors, to help develop software to report police violence. Cullors is known for her rants about so-called white supremacy and her conspiracy theories in which the U.S. is carrying out genocide against African-Americans.

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Briefly Noted: December 2015

The Hungarian-born radical hedge fund manager George Soros, the preeminent funder of border-busting campaigns here and abroad, admits his philanthropic efforts in Europe are aimed at destroying its borders. Viktor Orbán, Hungary’s prime minister, fiercely criticized Soros for trying to destroy the European Union by mass immigration, and Soros responded by claiming that a six-point plan promoted by one of his charities helps “uphold European values,” while Orbán’s actions “undermine those values.” Soros said Orbán’s plan “treats the protection of national borders as the objective and the refugees as an obstacle … [but my] plan treats the protection of refugees as the objective and national borders as the obstacle.” Of course it was Ronald Reagan who said, “A nation that cannot control its borders is not a nation.” Soros is proving Reagan right.

Student lynch mobs have been busy ousting college presidents and other senior officials lately for ill-defined acts of racial insensitivity. At the University of Missouri students made life difficult last month for president Tim Wolfe, who apologized for not doing enough about some dubious racial incidents on campus and then resigned. Wolfe took “full responsibility” for students’ “frustration” and said he hoped his resignation would help to “heal” whatever it was he did or didn’t do. Soon after the school’s chancellor, R. Bowen Loftin, under student attack for the same reasons, said he would resign at year’s end, even after he unveiled mandatory “diversity and inclusion” brainwashing for students, faculty, and staff.

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The Council on American-Islamic Relations: The benign public face of America’s “Wahhabi Lobby”

With the Obama administration going out of its way to make excuses for the Islamic terrorism it has allowed to happen on American soil, now is a good time to review an old profile we did a decade ago on CAIR.

The article was published in Organization Trends, August 2005 (PDF here).

Its title was, The Council on American-Islamic Relations: The benign public face of America’s “Wahhabi Lobby,” and it was written by Daniel Pipes and Sharon Chadha.


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Lifting the Veil on the ‘Islamophobia’ Hoax


Lifting the Veil on the ‘Islamophobia’ Hoax

By Matthew Vadum, Foundation Watch, December 2015 (PDF here)

Summary:  The purpose of this paper is not to indict Islam.  It is to warn readers about a dangerous effort to discourage Americans from thinking freely and arriving at their own conclusions about Islam.  The made-up word “Islamophobia” is wielded as a cudgel against those who dislike the Muslim religion and those who are merely skeptical of it.  The idea is to eventually make it as difficult and uncomfortable as possible to criticize the faith founded by Muhammad in the seventh century after the birth of Christ.  And a lot of well-heeled funders are part of a long-term campaign aimed at mainstreaming the tenets of Islam in American society. 

Remember when hysteria broke out at National Public Radio (NPR) in October 2010? Panic ensued when liberal commentator Juan Williams dared to share a personal anecdote on “The O’Reilly Factor” on Fox News Channel.

NPR fired Williams not because he disparaged Muslims—he didn’t—but because he made the apparently impolitic admission that he becomes “nervous” and “worried” when he sees people in “Muslim garb” on airplanes. That’s it. He experienced an emotion and talked about it on television. And he’s not the only American who gets a little bit jittery in such situations in a country where Islamic terrorists killed 3,000 Americans on Sept. 11, 2001 by flying commercial jetliners into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and a field in Pennsylvania. Williams and others experiencing the same anxieties aren’t bad people. They’re not bigots. They can’t control their emotional reactions to stimuli. They’re just normal, rational human beings.

But in the world of political correctness, that’s no excuse. Williams was cashiered because his comments were perceived by the cloistered mandarins of public radio as “Islamophobic.” NPR believed Williams thought bad thoughts; he should have felt ashamed of his authentic psychological reflexes, and he definitely should not have admitted these thought crimes on a top-rated TV show.

To the Left, whether the fear of which Williams spoke was well-founded or reasonable is irrelevant. The political correctness that has metastasized in American culture requires that no one speak ill of Islam or say anything that might stigmatize or other-ize a Muslim in any way. All Americans must think and say only nice things about Islam. To object to this kind of politically correct censorship is not to make the gross generalization that Muslims are bad people, but it is to say that people have the right to criticize such things as the subjugation of conquered peoples by the Caliphate in the eighth century. After all, people freely criticize Western countries for, say, their treatment of their eighteenth-century colonies; so surely the twenty-first-century bombers of Paris, and their religious ideology, shouldn’t be above criticism.

But the politically correct do not accept this toleration of honest disagreements. They are determined to stamp out criticism, and they have an army of nonprofit organizations, foundations, academics, media outlets, and name-calling activists to help them.

And it is axiomatic that those who scream loudest about Islamophobia tend to have the most to hide.

This is not just some abstract academic discussion. Working through the Organisation for Islamic Cooperation (or OIC, which until 2011 was called the Organisation of the Islamic Conference), Islamic states have been trying for years to convince the United Nations to criminalize this thought crime they call Islamophobia. And the Obama administration hasn’t exactly been burning up the long-distance telephone lines trying to change the minds of the OIC member-states.

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Briefly Noted: November 2015


The Obama White House has rolled out the red carpet several times for the purported civil rights leaders of Black Lives Matter. Recent White House visitor Phillip Agnew, head of Dream Defenders, which describes itself as “an uprising of communities in struggle, shifting culture through transformational organizing.” It calls for “the destruction of the political and economic systems of Capitalism and Imperialism as well as Patriarchy.” Two-time Communist Party USA vice presidential candidate Angela Davis, now Distinguished Professor Emerita at the University of California, is on its advisory board.

Left-wing financier George Soros is under fire in his native Hungary for promoting illegal immigration in that country, which is currently being swamped by mostly Muslim illegal aliens from the Middle East. Prime Minister Viktor Orban, who leads the national-conservative party known as the Fidesz–Hungarian Civic Alliance, accused an array of Soros-funded groups of “drawing a living from the immigration crisis.” Soros has written in op-eds that “frontline states like Hungary were shirking their asylum obligations” and that each European asylum seeker should be provided “with $16,800 annually for two years to help cover housing, health care and education costs,” reports. Orban spokesman János Lázár quipped that Soros “keeps bombarding the international public with his earth-shattering plans, quite obviously, in the name of true selflessness which he has manifested in so many ways in the countries where his activities have resulted in sovereign default in the past 30 years.”

Ready for jail? Shady class-action lawyer and Hillary Clinton 2016 bundler Mikal Watts has been indicted in Texas for false statements and identify theft connected to his lawsuit against BP for the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Watts, who allegedly invented plaintiffs to represent in the lawsuit, raised upwards of $100,000 for the pro-Clinton super PAC Ready for Hillary two years ago and hosted high-dollars fundraisers for President Obama, Washington Free Beacon reports. “My grandmother was a labor union activist,” he previously told WFB, describing himself as “born and raised on grassroots politics.” He also gave $290,000 to The American Worker Super PAC.

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