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Koch Footprints Lead to Political Powder Keg [View All]

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ensho Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-26-10 10:55 AM
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Koch Footprints Lead to Political Powder Keg
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http://counterpunch.com /


The Far Right's Secret Slush Fund to Keep Fear Alive


-snip-

Seven weeks before the Presidential election of 2008, approximately 100 newspapers and magazines in the U.S., including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Miami Herald, Philadelphia Inquirer, and St. Petersburg Times, distributed millions of DVDs of the documentary, Obsession: Radical Islams War Against the West. The DVDs were included in the Sunday editions. Altogether, including a separate direct mail campaign, 28 million DVDs flooded households in the swing voter states.

The newspapers did not know who was funding this massive propaganda campaign and, apparently, did not care. They inserted the DVD in their Pulitzer properties with the casualness of throwing in a sample of suds free detergent. The nonprofit organization named on the packaging of the DVD as the entity behind the film, the Clarion Fund, Inc., had no known history of operations and had a virtual office address in New York City with no physical presence and no employees on site. Documents submitted to the IRS to obtain its tax-exempt status show the Clarion Fund demanded total secrecy from its vendors:

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The reaction to corporate media peddling this propaganda in the final days of a Presidential race where one candidate was already being smeared for Muslim ties was immediate and harsh. A writer at Democratic Underground using the moniker MrMickeysMom grabbed the keyboard to vent a spontaneous reaction: Okay Who ELSE just picked through the Sunday advertisements and viewed this DVD today?...Theyre here to warn us about the declaration of war on Western Culture and to bring down Christianity and Judaism just in time for the election. So, this is the heat, folks. This blitz DVD is one more step the biggest, boldest step I can see to orchestrate fear, hatred and to change your voteIt told me that the White House will be changed and become the Muslim Housethat America has to wake up and that America is strangling itself with our political correctness.

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CounterPunch can now report what this race-baiting, fear-mongering campaign cost and where the money, at least nominally, came from. The 28 million DVDs were produced at a cost of $15,676,181 by Artist Direct Media which does mass manufacturing of CDs and DVDs with volume discounts. The big media buy for Sunday newspaper insertions ran up the tidy tab of $719,436 and was conducted by NSA Media, a unit of the global ad giant, Interpublic Group, parent of McCann-Erikson. That figure seems decidedly on the light side so there may be other funding sources involved that have not yet surfaced. (NSA Media is a powerful ad buyer, representing some of the biggest print buyers and consumer brands in the country, which might help explain why so few questions were asked by the largest newspapers about this unseemly project.) The full tab, and then some, was paid by the super secretive libertarian nonprofit, Donors Capital Fund. In 2008, Clarion Fund became Donors Capital Funds largest grantee by a large margin, receiving $17,778,600. That sum constituted 96 per cent of all funds received by Clarion in 2008 and 9 times its revenue in 2007.

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Legal counsel for the Kochs has declined to respond to two emails with a weeks lead time seeking clarification of the relationship the Kochs have to Donors Capital and Donors Trust.
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thank you CounterPunch
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