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Sat Aug 8, 2015, 10:14 PM

Claim: George Soros donated $33 million to fund rioting Ferguson protest groups - Snopes

Riot Act

Claim: George Soros donated $33 million to fund rioting Ferguson protest groups.


TRUE: A grantmaking network founded by George Soros provided funding to some groups that engaged in Ferguson-related protest activities.

FALSE: George Soros gave money to various groups for the express purpose of promoting Ferguson-related protests and riots.

Examples: (Collected via e-mail, January 2015)

George Soros funded the Ferguson, and other, riots across the country with millions of dollars.

Did George Soros spend 33 million to bankroll Ferguson demonstrators?

Origins: The Hungarian-born multi-billionaire business magnate and philanthropist George Soros has in recent years acquired a mythos rivaling that of the Rosicrucians, the Illuminati, and the Trilateral Commission: a shadowy mastermind who wields tremendous wealth and influence to furtively manipulate events worldwide in furtherance of a conspiracy for establishing a New World Order. Various rumors have claimed Soros controls everything from the international illegal drug trade to gun manufacturers to this very web site (snopes.com). Added to that list in January 2015 was a rumor Soros had "sponsored" or "bankrolled," to the tune of some $33 million, protesters who rioted after the fatal shooting of Michael Brown by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri, on 9 August 2014.

The rumor stemmed from Soros' connection with the Open Society Foundations (OSF), a progressive-liberal grantmaking network he founded (as the Open Society Institute) in 1993 to fund civil society groups around the world. The OSF's Mission & Values statement describes the network's purpose thusly:

The Open Society Foundations work to build vibrant and tolerant societies whose governments are accountable and open to the participation of all people.

We seek to strengthen the rule of law; respect for human rights, minorities, and a diversity of opinions; democratically elected governments; and a civil society that helps keep government power in check.

We help to shape public policies that assure greater fairness in political, legal, and economic systems and safeguard fundamental rights.

We implement initiatives to advance justice, education, public health, and independent media.

We build alliances across borders and continents on issues such as corruption and freedom of information.

Working in every part of the world, the Open Society Foundations place a high priority on protecting and improving the lives of people in marginalized communities.

The OSF has nodes in over 60 different countries and has funded a wide range of initiatives all over the world, including:

$1.5 billion on democratic development in the countries of Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union;
$677 million for public health issues such as HIV and AIDS, TB, palliative care, harm reduction, and patients’ rights;
$205 million to fight discrimination and advance the rights of Roma communities in Europe;
$2.6 billion to defend human rights, particularly the rights of women, ethnic, racial, and religious minorities, and often marginalized groups such as drug users, sex workers, and LGBTQ communities;
$2 billion for education projects ranging from preschool to higher education reform;
$1.4 billion to promote reform in the United States on issues such as criminal justice, drugs, palliative care, education, immigration, equal rights, and democratic governance.

According to various alarmist reports, Soros himself virtually single-handedly enabled and promoted protests connected with the Ferguson shooting because some of the groups involved (tangentially or otherwise) with activism-related events received some portion of their funding from the OSF network:

In all, Mr. Soros gave at least $33 million in one year to support already-established groups that emboldened the grass-roots, on-the-ground activists in Ferguson, according to the most recent tax filings of his nonprofit Open Society Foundations.

The financial tether from Mr. Soros to the activist groups gave rise to a combustible protest movement that transformed a one-day criminal event in Missouri into a 24-hour-a-day national cause celebre.

Soros-sponsored organizations helped mobilize protests in Ferguson, building grass-roots coalitions on the ground backed by a nationwide online and social media campaign.

Other Soros-funded groups made it their job to remotely monitor and exploit anything related to the incident that they could portray as a conservative misstep, and to develop academic research and editorials to disseminate to the news media to keep the story alive.

But taking that information and converting it into the assertion Soros himself funded Ferguson-related protests and riots is problematic for a number of reasons. Although George Soros is the founder and chairman of OSF, he quite obviously does not personally oversee and approve every single grant made by the OSF network to the multitude of
organizations and programs that the network helps to fund. As well, the $33 million figure includes just about every organization with any connection to Ferguson-related activism that received monies from the OSF network, even if their involvement was tangential (such as publishing, writing, or promoting hashtags about the issue). And that such groups may have received part of their funding from the OSF network doesn't mean those funds were given for the specific purpose of organizing Ferguson-related protests, or with the knowledge or intent they would be used thusly.

As Kenneth Zimmerman, director of OSF's U.S. Programs observed, some of the groups involved have been receiving OSF funding since long before the Ferguson shooting was a political issue, and the OSF itself did not promote or direct Ferguson-related protests:

Mr. Zimmerman said OSF has been giving to these types of groups since its inception in the early '90s, and that, although groups involved in the protests have been recipients of Mr. Soros' grants, they were in no way directed to protest at the behest of Open Society.

"The incidents, whether in Staten Island, Cleveland or Ferguson, were spontaneous protests — we don't have the ability to control or dictate what others say or choose to say," Mr. Zimmerman said. "But these circumstances focused people's attention — and it became increasingly evident to the social justice groups involved that what a particular incident like Ferguson represents is a lack of accountability and a lack of democratic participation."

Last updated: 17 January 2015

Read more at http://www.snopes.com/politics/business/sorosferguson.asp#A8fcjufcMDDXE5cV.99

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Sun Aug 9, 2015, 01:01 AM

1. Good on George Soros! Mahalo Don

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Sun Aug 9, 2015, 11:25 PM

2. The outrageous claim that was being made is that Soros exclusively funded BLM, and that goes to

prove that because of that Soros, (who is a Hillary supporter), motivated BLM to go after Bernie.


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Response to still_one (Reply #2)

Sun Aug 9, 2015, 11:39 PM

3. So if his foundation funded them, how does that make a difference in regards to their perception

of loyalty to his political wishes, whether he asks or not?

I imagine they know that Soros is the founder and Chairman of the foundation as per the OP, so would actions against the political opponent of his choosing garner favor from him and in turn his foundation?

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Response to Uncle Joe (Reply #3)

Mon Aug 10, 2015, 12:10 AM

4. They can "perceive" all they want, and that doesn't make it true. Just like the perception that the

Clinton Foundation is involved in nefarious activities. They have a perception, but the only proof they need is they see the name Clinton. Same with the Soros bullshit, they see that he is a CLINTON supporter, and automatically ASSuME that there must be some involvement.

That is wonderful logic. Howard Dean endorsed Hillary CLINTON today. Howard Dean was for the 50 state strategy. The 50 state strategy involves Southern states. "Southern states have more right-wing republicans than Northern states", therefore since Hillary is being endorsed by Howard Dean, she must the same as right-wing republicans.

With that logic and since Bernie is going to speak at Liberty University, what can be inferred about that?

Or with that logic people can also have the perception that Bernie does have a problem with race? It doesn't have to be based on facts.

People see what they want to see, and it doesn't have to be based on facts at all. The NY Times reports a story that is refuted by the justice department, and others throughout government, they rewrite portions of the story, because it was refuted by the very folks they said acknowledged the story. However, in spite of that the perception is still that the original NY Times story was accurate.

The McCarthy logic that seems to be utilized by some boggles the mind

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Response to still_one (Reply #4)

Mon Aug 10, 2015, 12:18 AM

5. If their perception which in this case is valid, is in turn followed by seemingly illogical or

reinforcing actions, then it doesn't take Sherlock Holmes to connect the dots.

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Response to Uncle Joe (Reply #5)

Mon Aug 10, 2015, 03:54 AM

6. So is your perception that because Soros enterprise donated to civil rights groups in Ferguson,

you assume BLM is one of those groups, and that BLM is attacking Bernie for that reason?

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Response to still_one (Reply #6)

Mon Aug 10, 2015, 03:58 AM

7. It also conveniently happened five days after Hillary Clinton was heckled by a lone man asking

whether she supported the restoration of Glass-Steagall, something which she and George Soros oppose.

What better way to change the subject?

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Response to Uncle Joe (Reply #7)

Mon Aug 10, 2015, 04:25 AM

8. and I notice you have an avatar of the person who thought Joe Lieberman would make a good VP

What kind of perception should one make of that?

I understand where you are coming from now. Have a good day

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Response to still_one (Reply #8)

Mon Aug 10, 2015, 04:38 AM

9. Al Gore also thought Howard Dean would make a good President and Dean

backs Hillary so what does that tell you?

Having said that I believe Dean would've made a good President.

Two points regarding Lieberman, Bill Clinton's irresponsible actions greatly constrained Gore's ability to choose his running mate, the corporate media had been having a field day or should I say field years over Lewinsky.

The second point being had Gore come to power, space time would be different as would Liebermann, furthermore he would've been relegated to serving under Gore; and there is no certainty that Al would've chose him for a second term running mate, as Gore's early support for Dean in 2004 exemplifies.

You have a good day as well.

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Response to Uncle Joe (Reply #9)

Mon Aug 10, 2015, 05:07 AM

10. I was being sarcastic about Gore. Regardless, unless there is proof of Hillary's involvement, I

don't buy it.

I see posts saying the "Seattle BLM people involved in the first protest in Seattle against Bernie are everything from Palin supporters, Malcom X supporters, to religious zealots".

Those allegations are gathered from their supposed Facebook and tweets. I am skeptical of that also. In other words, I want confirmation, not because a social networking page says so.

This really should not be that difficult to sort out exactly where these individuals who say they are from the Seattle BLM branch are coming from.

Unfortunately, I doubt our illustrious media will do it. Someone like Rachel Maddow could do it, but I am not holding my breath.

With that said, I also believe that whether this involves a "dirty trick" from a campaign, a misrepresentation of three folks who say they represent BLM, or something elset, the facts will come out.

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Response to still_one (Reply #10)

Mon Aug 10, 2015, 05:18 AM

11. Thanks for the clarification and I especially agree with your last three sentences.

Peace to you, still_one.

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Response to Uncle Joe (Reply #11)

Mon Aug 10, 2015, 05:22 AM

12. Right back at you Joe, take care

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