News of Interest.TV

This article explains how the military-industrial-acedemia complex and CIA associated Ford Foundation have been providing substantial grants to numerous ”alternative” media organizations such as FAIR, Progressive Magazine, and Democracy Now's Pacifica. Also explained is other establishment organizations and Foundations being involved as well, such as the MacArthur, Soros, Rockefeller, Carnegie, and Shumann Foundations.

It is explained that involvement of essentially the entire political establishment in funding major ”alternative” media insures that such outlets will be ”more bark than bite” and be ”the kind of 'opposition' that the ruling elite can tolerate and live with.”

This article is reprinted here as a part of the article Media Outlets Such as ”Democracy Now!” are Establishment Controlled News Sources. Text has been hilighted by News of Interest.TV.

”Alternative” Media Paymasters: Carlyle, Alcoa, Xerox, Coca Cola...?

by Brian Salter

September 29, 2002

Logo of the military industrial complex "Carlyle Group."
Logo of the military industrial complex "Carlyle Group."

The Ford Foundation, historically closely linked to the CIA and the military-industrial-academic complex, has in recent years provided substantial funding grants to a number of ”alternative” media organizations, such as FAIR, Progressive magazine, and Pacifica. Also participating in this type of funding are other elite foundations such as MacArthur, Soros, Rockefeller, Carnegie, and Schumann.

General policy for grant-making at the Ford Foundation is handled by the Board of Trustees. Approval for all grants over $100,000 must be personally signed by Ford Foundation President Susan Berresford, who is also a member of David Rockefeller’s Trilateral Commission and the Ford Foundation-subsidized Council on Foreign Relations Inc.. So, for example, a $150,000 grant to FAIR by the Ford Foundation in 2001 for ”general support to monitor and analyze the performance of the news media in the United States” was approved directly by Trilateral Commission member Berresford, in accordance with the grantmaking policy guidelines established by the Ford Foundation Board of Trustees. Given the tremendous power that the Ford Foundation has historically wielded in influencing cultural, academic, and political affairs, one must ask, who makes up this board of directors whose policies the Ford Foundation president implements—and what interests do they represent?

In May 2002, the Ford Foundation Board of Trustees welcomed a new member, Afsaneh M. Beschloss, former World Bank investment officer and CEO / President of Carlyle Asset Management Group, which is a division of the Carlyle Group, the defence-related international investment firm which enjoys all-star revolving door influence in the Bush White House and is enjoying a post-9/11 profit bonanza. Beschloss first joined Carlyle Asset Management Group in 2001 as a managing director. She also happens to be married to George W. Bush’s official presidential historian, Michael Beschloss.

[News of Interest.TV editor's note— See the video The Iron Triangle - The Carlisle Group.]

It would appear that the Ford Foundation Board of Trustees is within the Bush administration’s sphere of cronyism. Is this who should be entrusted to decide how grant money gets doled out to ”alternative” media organizations? Is the CEO of Carlyle Asset Management Group and wife of a current presidential historian likely to smile upon funding alternative media organizations which are eager to go beyond offering the usual cut-and-paste complaints about Carlyle Group influence in the White House, and ask more probing questions about this company’s role the ”War on Terrorism”, such as its alleged investment in anthrax vaccine maker Bioport or its past business ties with the not-quite-completely-estranged-from-their-errant-son bin Laden family?

In 1999 the Ford Foundation Board of Trustees was joined by Deval L. Patrick, currently Executive Vice President and General Counsel for Coca Cola. As General Counsel, Patrick currently has a difficult task to contend with at Coca Cola: defending the company against an historic lawsuit brought by the International Labor Rights Fund and the United Steelworkers of America on behalf of the largest Coca Cola union in Columbia. The charges are that the company is guilty of willful negligence and complicity during a long-running campaign of kidnapping, violence, and murder committed against unionists at Colomian bottling factories by paramilitary death squads (conditions which have kept labor costs conveniently low). A number of humanitarian and labor rights groups have lent their support to the lawsuit. Incidentally, this wouldn’t be Mr. Patrick’s first run-in with paramilitary death squads: in 1995, as Clinton’s Assistant Attorney General for civil rights, he declined to pursue any serious action following an internal Justice Department report which recommended criminal prosecution of the Federal agents who massacred the Randy Weaver family at Ruby Ridge in 1992. Prior to joining Coca Cola, Patrick was the Vice President and General Counsel for Texaco.

Also on the Ford Foundation Board of Trustees are Paul A. Allaire, Chairman of the Board of the Ford Foundation and Former Chairman / CEO of Xerox Corporation, and David T. Kearns, another former Chairman / CEO of Xerox. Xerox happens to be one of the corporations implicated in the ongoing accounting scandals. Can we fully depend on media organizations funded by the Ford Foundation to turn up the heat and beyond the limited, damage-controllable cover story of ”greedy, reckless CEOs” and ”excess deregulation” to examine the deeper aspects of the corporate scandals which seem to indicate a calculated mass transfer of wealth to the ultra-rich? Even more significant are much larger related ripoffs in the US government, such as the HUD scandal and the disappearance of roughly THREE TRILLION dollars from the US Treasury (according to official US audits which failed to produce audited financial statements as required by law). Financial expert Catherine Austin Fitts (who helped with the official clean-up of the Savings & Loan and BCCI scandals and helped implement the requirement that Federal agencies had to produce audited financial statements as an Assistant Secretary for HUD in the first Bush administration) argues that such extraordinary failures to produce audited financial statements along with trillions of undocumentable adjustments to get the books to ”balance” could not have occured without a conspiracy involving high officials of the Treasury Department and the Federal Reserve. Is the Ford Foundation likely to support media efforts to tell the truth about concerted upper class looting of public resources?

Another powerful elite corporate interest represented on the Board of Trustees is aluminum manufacturing giant Alcoa. Alain J. P. Belda, Chairman and CEO of Alcoa, joined the Ford Foundation in 2000 (he is also a director of Citigroup and DuPont). Alcoa is also linked to the Bush administration through Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill, who was Belda’s predecessor and who has also served as the chairman of war industry think tank Rand Corporation. Alcoa happens to posess some uniquely repellent skeletons in its corporate closet. Originally founded by the powerful right-wing Mellon family (whose Mellon Bank is currently the Carlyle Group’s sole outside partner), the company was centrally involved in the conspiracy amongst a group of US industrialists and Wall Street interests in the 1930s to support and trade with the Nazis through a cartel agreement with I.G. Farben, the notorious industrial giant which built the Nazi war machine and ran their concentration camps. This would continue even into the early part of World War II, and Alcoa’s sabotage of the US Air Force’s aluminum production program with this cartel agreement led Secretary of Interior Harold Ickles to warn in June 1941, ”If America loses the war it can thank the Aluminum Corporation of America.” Some of the other elite names involved in this crime were Rockefeller, Ford, Harriman, DuPont, and Bush; all were strong supporters of the racial eugenics movement which inspired some of Hitler’s own policies.

There doesn’t seem to be much indication that the ”alternative” media recepients of Ford Foundation funding have any interest in exposing this still heavily suppressed treasonous episode in US history, nor does there seem to be much interest in exposing how these same elite families continue to fund racial eugenics-related organizations, one example being the Manhattan Institute (funded by the Mellon-Scaife fortune and the Rockefellers’ Chase Manhattan Bank) which originated President Bush’s ”compassionate conservatism” policies. It hardly seems likely that the Ford Foundation Board of Trustees would want to fund alternative researchers and journalists who are inclined to connect these kinds of dots and bring critical scrutiny to the alarming fact that the US elite interests who have had the closest historical relationship with fascism, eugenics, and genocide (in addition, being closely connected with the biotech & biowarfare industries) are in a position of great influence over the planning of US bioterrorism defence policy, including new proposals for mass forced vaccinations.

Is it any more likely that the Ford Foundation, given its long and well-documented history as a back channel for CIA covert funding streams, would favor the kind of alternative media which might be expected to ask troublesome questions about the CIA’s recent activities? For example, many questions need asking about the CIA’s close connections with its subordinate in Pakistan, the ISI, which was a main supporter of the Taliban before 9/11. The former head of the ISI was discovered to have organized a wire transfer of $100,000 to the enigmatic alleged 9/11 ringleader Mohammed Atta in Summer of 2001, and yet also wound up visiting Washington D.C. for high-level meetings with US officials the week of 9/11. Any competent investigative journalist would find information like this to be compellingly in need of further inquiry, but the ”alternative” media who receive Ford Foundation grants don’t seem to find it very interesting at all.

Is it likely that the Ford Foundation would fund the kind of alternative media which would be inclined to look deeply into the long-running control over US foreign policy exerted by the private and secretive Council on Foreign Relations, given the fact that the CFR counts among its funding sources the Ford Foundation and Xerox? Or would the Ford Foundation more likely favor those who could be relied upon to toe the party line that the CFR (and other elite policymaking NGOs like the Trilateral Commission and Bilderberg Group) functions only as a stuffy intellectual debate society, and that anyone who argues otherwise is a ”paranoid nut”?

Is it likely that establishment foundations, which are invested heavily in Big Oil, would choose to fund the kind of alternative journalists and researchers who are asking challenging questions about the formative role of oil politics in 9/11 and the so-called ”War on Terrorism”? Or those who have been pursuing urgent investigations into the stunning array of evidence pointing to Bush administration complicity in the 9/11 attacks?

Of course not. Instead, the big establishment foundations are likely to seek out ”alternative” media that is more bark than bite, which they can rely on to ignore and dimiss sensitive topics like those mentioned above -- and many more -- as ”irrelevant distractions” or ”conspiracy theory.” Recipients of funding will always protest that they are not swayed by any conflicts of interest and don’t allow the sources of funding to affect their decisions, but whether or not these claims are actually true is already somewhat of a red herring. The more important question is, what sort of ”alternative” journalism garners the goodwill of the Ford Foundation corporate rogues’ gallery in the first place? Or the Rockefeller Foundation? Or Carnegie, Soros, and Schumann?

Judging by the journalism being offered (and not offered) by Nation magazine, FAIR, Pacifica, Progressive magazine, IPA, Mother Jones, Alternet, and other recipients of their funding, the big establishment foundations are successfully sponsoring the kind of ”opposition” that the US ruling elite can tolerate and live with.

Brian Salter,
29 September 2002

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