Private foundations are using their tax-sheltered money to influence news and entertainment media according to a Poynter Institute study. Foundations like the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation and the Pew Charitable Trust have funded journalist and media outlet with the intention to "shape" policy. "
John Graham, who has been nominated by President Bush to the top regulatory oversight position in the United States, is an an industry ally who has a long record of crusading against health, safety and environmental standards through the industry-funded Harvard Center for Risk Assessment. Public Citizen recently authored a 130-page report (available as a free PDF download) exposing his decade of efforts on behalf of the corporations that fund him.
The Center for Defense of Free Enterprise, led by anti-environmental "Wise Use" organizers Alan Gottlieb and Ron Arnold, has created this website which claims to "unmask" the Rainforest Action Network for its "ties to other radical groups," "anti-capitalist ideology" and "lawless and dangerous activities." To "unmask" Gottlieb and Arnold themselves, read the Environmental Working Group's excellent backgrounder.
Former Naderite Richard Pollock (more recently a flack for Shandwick PR and the anti-environmentalist Global Climate Information Project) has been hired as the new vice president of communications for the libertarian Cato Institute, in which capacity he plans "to be more aggressive in using communications to help Cato seize credit on issues such as Social Security privatization and school choice."
Derailing a multibillion-dollar federal plan to restore the Florida Everglades is just the kind of cause that suits Citizens for a Sound Economy, a conservative think tank. But soon after the group took on the Everglades project in 1998, the Washington-based nonprofit got an incentive that went beyond the purely philosophical. It received $700,000 in contributions from Florida's three biggest sugar enterprises, which stand to lose thousands of acres of cane-growing land to reclamation if the Army Corps of Engineers plan goes into effect.