Will the media drop its Koch feeding frenzy

And move on to Bill Gates?
Gates

Gates

The following comes from a July 17 story on the Federalist.com.

The Huffington Post thinks it has a big story about the eeeevil Koch brothers’ attempts to “[buy] their way into the minds of public school students.” Charles Koch helps fund entrepreneurship classes that last year taught “radical free-market ideology” to more than 1,000 high school students—crazy things, like the economist-proven reality that a minimum wage “hurts workers and slows economic growth.” The classes aim to turn young people into “liberty-advancing agents.” Oh, the horror! Advancing liberty! Here come the reds!

The piece notes the Koch’s “tens of millions of dollars” given to colleges and universities as evidence of their “growing imprint on American classrooms.” The worst thing it can find is a history teacher giving business classes without the proper government certification. The most laughable thing about the “investigative” article, however, is its ignorance of the U.S. education landscape. If anyone wants to examine the big billionaires getting inside the minds of schoolkids, a look at some numbers suggests target A-1 must be Bill Gates.

Koch brothers

Koch brothers

The Gates Foundation is the world’s largest, at $37 billion in assets, according to its tax filings. That number alone makes it far, far larger than any single or cumulative Koch gift. Some may argue Gates spends money on philanthropy, not politics; but Gates has actually perfected the practice of using nonprofits to influence politics. Leftists claim to hate this tactic—witness the manufactured rage and proposed Internal Revenue Service regulations aiming to curb politics-minded conservative nonprofits—but it seems they actually just hate when it’s used against them.

The classes aim to turn young people into “liberty-advancing agents.” Oh, the horror!

Michigan State University political scientist Sarah Reckhow calls Gates-style funding “the shadow bureaucracy.” Scott Thomas, dean of Claremont University’s education school, has also studied Gates’ activity. He calls it “advocacy philanthropy.”

The Gates Foundation is “jumping into the policy process itself,” Thomas told me last year. Its activities “look a lot like lobbying.”

Take education policy, where Gates dominates the nation. Gates has directly funded the U.S. Department of Education and state departments of education, from Delaware to Kentucky to Washington and beyond. It has also bankrolled an initiative driving most of education policy, period: Common Core, which alters pre-K through graduate school, teacher training, teacher promotion and job security, local and state tax bills for testing technology, and more. To date, Gates has spent $242 million on Common Core by my calculation, including all the original grants to foster its creation. Of that, $147 million, or more than half, is for direct advocacy, through grants to military coalitions and Jeb Bush’s Foundation for Excellence in Education, to influence state and federal lawmakers through various trade groups including Chambers of Commerce, and to myriad teacher outreach efforts.

“The Gates Foundation’s agenda has become the country’s agenda in education,” Michael Petrilli of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute said in 2009 after five Gates employees moved to the Obama administration. Two joined the U.S. Department of Education, and had to get Obama administration waivers from its conflict of interest policy banning lobbyists from becoming high-ranking federal employees. A few months later, Gates offered states money to write proposals for the Obama administration’s Race to the Top grants from a stimulus slush fund—but only for states that had committed to the still-unwritten Common Core.

The Koch brothers’ entrepreneurship program reaches 1,000 of the nation’s 50 million school kids. That’s 0.002 percent—hardly enough to swing any votes even if they all convert to “radical free-market ideology.” Common Core reaches something like 40 million kids. Or, if one wanted to compare Kochs to another education monolith, try The College Board. Last year, 2.2 million kids took their Advanced Placement exams, which are left-biased and getting more so. Its latest-available tax form reports the Board received $3.2 million in government grants in 2011, and another $3.3 million from taxpayers for goods provided (such as when taxpayers cover the cost of a kid’s PSAT test). It also spent almost a million dollars on lobbying, which is no surprise, because a good number of states sponsor AP and SAT tests.

In other words, with College Board, taxpayers pay for millions of children to take politically slanted classes and tests, while in the Koch case at least the Kochs are using their own money to promote their ideas to the bare thousand they can get. Yet no one sees any exposés of College Board or Gates, or even a sniff that something cronyist might be going on here. It took four years for someone besides communist sympathizers (no exaggeration—they describe themselves that way) within teachers unions to complain that, hey, maybe there are reasons to question a private individual’s power over millions of U.S. schoolchildren, especially when Gates has a financial conflict of interest. When a Washington Post reporter finally got around, after everything was said and done, to asking Gates some less-than-fawning questions (it’s not accurate to call them pointed), Gates dropped his jaw because nobody has ever suggested such things to him before.

A basic comparison like this suggests that, if they really care about underhanded attempts to control public education, the media should drop its Koch feeding frenzy and move on to bigger fish, such as Gates. But, since Gates is a self-declared Democrat who favors government intervention on pretext of climate change and funds the nation’s biggest abortion provider, that’s not likely.

To read original story, click here.

 

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Comments

  1. Melinda Gates, a Catholic, is a powerful force for abortion.

    I have a one word of advice for the Melinda and Bill Gates foundation war on malaria: DDT.

  2. Most of the kids graduating high school today have never studied the US Constitution, and their own State Constitution.
    Most of the kids graduating high school can not accurately define communism, socialism, or democracy.

    Most Catholic kids graduating high school today have never read/studied the Bible.
    Most Catholic kids graduating high school today have never read/studied the “Catechism of the Catholic Church, Second Edition”, and do not even know of its existence.

  3. CCC: ” 1885 The principle of subsidiarity is opposed to all forms of collectivism.
    It sets limits for state intervention. It aims at harmonizing the relationships between individuals and societies. It tends toward the establishment of true international order.”

    CCC: ” 2411 Contracts are subject to commutative justice which regulates exchanges between persons and between institutions in accordance with a strict respect for their rights.
    Commutative justice obliges strictly;
    it requires safeguarding property rights, paying debts, and fulfilling obligations freely contracted.
    Without commutative justice, no other form of justice is possible.
    One distinguishes commutative justice from legal justice which concerns what the citizen owes in fairness to the community,
    and from distributive justice which regulates what the community owes its citizens in proportion to their contributions and needs. ”

    CCC: ” 2425 The Church has rejected the totalitarian and atheistic ideologies associated in modem times with “communism” or “socialism.”
    She has likewise refused to accept, in the practice of “capitalism,” individualism and the absolute primacy of the law of the marketplace over human labor. Regulating the economy solely by centralized planning perverts the basis of social bonds; regulating it solely by the law of the marketplace fails social justice, for “there are many human needs which cannot be satisfied by the market.” Reasonable regulation of the marketplace and economic initiatives, in keeping with a just hierarchy of values and a view to the common good, is to be commended.”

  4. Bill K. says:

    High School Students should study Saul Alinsky’s – “Rules for Radicals” so they will understand manipulation, and how society’s can be manipulated by words and infiltration. This book gives specific directions.

    High School Students must learn to know and understand their enemies. “Rules for Radicals” was studied and is used by Obama and Hillary Clinton.
    Students need to be taught the power of the secular media.
    http://www.crossroad.to/Quotes/communism/alinsky.htm

  5. The socialist media (including the Huffington Post) do not want to mention the BILLIONS of dollars spent by atheist GEORGE SOROS, a big fan of Saul Alinsky.
    SOROS influences every aspect of our government which includes those elected, union leadership, judges, the Catholic Church, etc. This all in turn makes decisions which influence the school system.

    SOROS hates the Catholic Church, and works to marginalize the Church by funding heretics and schismatics.
    See: ” OBAMA’s COUNTERFEIT CATHOLICS” (written documentation included).
    http://www.churchmilitant.tv/cia/02fake/

  6. Panthermom says:

    Is this a traditional Catholic sight or a right wing conservative site? You just can’t tell with stories like these.

    • Tom Byrne says:

      Panthermom:
      This story isn’t about praising the Koch brothers. It’s about highlighting the hypocrisy of the media when it flails at gnats and swallows camels. I’d rather the Church look at both conservative and liberal policies dispassionately, but the reality of modern America is that the Left threatens the liberties of the Church and of ordinary Catholics and the Right does not, and indeed often defends them. We had right-wing enemies in the 19th and early 20th centuries, of course and should remember that we could have them again, but the current threat comes from the opposite direction.

    • david drewelow says:

      panther mom, i think the story was chosen for the site because the Koch brothers, as conservatives, have been shown to be pro-life, while the Gates foundation , Bill and Melinda, liberals in most ways, have been massively funding all forms of population control. to be pro-life is the current american environment is, lamentably, to be seen as part of the ‘right’. World population control is part of the U S foreign policy ( and EU, ALSO) in order to prevent countries that are targets of investment from experiencing unrest if population outstrips resources. it also makes these ‘markets” (our bothers and sisters in Christ) more predictable and less costly to police if they become large and clamor for food when it has not been budgeted for them. There was once a Brazilian cardinal who made an observation about the sensitive cross-over point between Christ’s teachings of caring for all the desire of some to care for fewer to have leftover for profit:” when i cried out about the need to help the poor, they called me a saint, but when i asked why they were poor, they called me a communist”.

      • Anonymous says:

        GEORGE SOROS from the far left is an enemy of the Church.
        “OBAMA’s COUNTERFEIT CATHOLICS” including documentation is important for all Catholics to view.

  7. This article from Crisis Magazine gives a chilling account of Nancy Pelosi and George Soros’ attack on the Catholic Church.
    http://www.crisismagazine.com/2014/whats-behind-pelosis-attack-archbishop-cordileone

  8. It might be helpful, for the sake of this discussion, if we look at the issue from the basis of reality. A number of years ago the heads of the education departments of most of the States got together and decided that they needed a “core” curriculum that they could use to improve the education system in their respective states. The Obama administration was not involved. The aim was, for simplicity sake, that at the end of the school year, no matter the state or the school, students would have been exposed to and learned a “core” curriculum. If you, as a parent moved from one town to another, from one state to another, your children would be studying the same material as the school you left. This is common in most countries. The Obama administration, that had nothing to do with the development of the “core” curriculum looked at it and said that it was good. They decided, for right or wrong, to support the curriculum with federal dollars – for accepting the curriculum, helping create teacher training in how to teach the new curriculum, and for other implementation costs. Once the did that, many states backed out of the curriculum they had helped develop. If President Obama was in favor of it, it must be bad? The lovers of conspiracy theories loved it. The common core math curriculum seems to be ok as a curriculum, but the new way to teach it seems a bit off kilter. The English curriculum drives me nuts, because it doesn’t include enough “classical” literature, but is focused on technical writing. (That may be an over-generalization).

    • Tom Byrne says:

      Bob One:
      I am a veteran teacher and your specific complaints about CC math and English are mine. My principled complaints are these: (1) American education is local, as Horace Mann wanted it. What is “common in other countries” i.e. national standards somehow nationally enforced has been regarded with suspicion here, long before Obama. (2) The federal DoEd is unconstitutional, because the federal government has no stated role in education, no matter how many presidents of either party choose to ignore the fact. (3) CC was drafted with minimal input from classroom teachers, as both the teachers’ unions and conservative critics have complained. Fortunately, we both know that educational fads do not last.

    • USCCB on Common Core # 5.
      ” In the Church, the principle of subsidiarity directs that human events are best handled at the lowest possible level, closest to the individuals affected by the decisions being made.
      In the matter of education, this involves the competent authority at the diocesan and local levels This principle provides a great strength for Catholic schools as it gives the local diocesan and school community the ability to make decisions at the school level related to guidelines and curriculum. It also allows for adjustments and adaptations to be made by teachers and administrators for the children under their care. This is the great strength of Catholic schools. They control and direct their own curricula.”
      http://usccb.org/beliefs-and-teachings/how-we-teach/catholic-education/common-core-state-standards-faqs.cfm

  9. Anonymous says:

    In my view, Bill Gates is either the most naive, aw-shucks kind of innocente billionaire who’s almost simple-minded in his funding every kind of evil scheme that exists, or he’s a very smart, uber-calculating money-lusting crony capitalist that would make Leo XIII’s head spin with his machinations directed at “improving” society at large. I think most of the evidence points in THAT direction. Both Bill & Melinda Gates are huge funders of anti-population schemes, and have been so for quite a few years now. Melinda, the self-proclaimed Catholic, has never met a contraceptive she didn’t like, abortifacient or no. (very recently she allegedly came out against legalized abortion, but with her and Bill, everything’s VERY relative) Now, being billionaires as they are, just that fact alone makes them perceive almost EVERYTHING vastly different than would you or I. Everything in their very privileged universe is seen through the prism of incredible wealth. The distortions due to that circumstance makes them radically different than most of the rest of humanity. Read F. Scott Fitzgerald’s take on very rich people, and it all becomes clear. In any case, the Koch brothers would SEEM to be a very different strain of that breed. For one thing, they refreshingly seem like true innocentes in their huge regard for the Tea Party. And they throw LOTS of money at it. But, they from time to time also fund certain Democrats as well. So, who knows? What IS their real agenda? Not sure, but in the aggregate, their hearts seem to be in the right place. Also, are they not alleged to be Evangelical Christians?. The insanity of the times we all live through makes everything so hard to sift. God Bless everyone, Markrite

  10. mark mitchell says:

    In my view, Bill Gates is either the most naive, aw-shucks kind of innocente billionaire who’s almost simple-minded in his funding every kind of evil scheme that exists, or he’s a very smart, uber-calculating money-lusting crony capitalist that would make Leo XIII’s head spin with his machinations directed at “improving” society at large. I think most of the evidence points in THAT direction. Both Bill & Melinda Gates are huge funders of anti-population schemes, and have been so for quite a few years now. Melinda, the self-proclaimed Catholic, has never met a contraceptive she didn’t like, abortifacient or no. (very recently she allegedly came out against legalized abortion, but with her and Bill, everything’s VERY relative) Now, being billionaires as they are, just that fact alone makes them perceive almost EVERYTHING vastly different than would you or I. Everything in their very privileged universe is seen through the prism of incredible wealth. The distortions due to that circumstance makes them radically different than most of the rest of humanity. Read F. Scott Fitzgerald’s take on very rich people, and it all becomes clear. In any case, the Koch brothers would SEEM to be a very different strain of that breed. For one thing, they refreshingly seem like true innocentes in their huge regard for the Tea Party. And they throw LOTS of money at it. But, they from time to time also fund certain Democrats as well. So, who knows? What IS their real agenda? Not sure, but in the aggregate, their hearts seem to be in the right place. Also, are they not alleged to be Evangelical Christians?. The insanity of the times we all live through makes everything so hard to sift. God Bless everyone, Markrite

  11. The Federal Government including the Dept of Ed does NOT know best.
    The dumbing down of America to the lowest common denominator is criminal.
    The US Dept of Education should be ABOLISHED.
    Educational “fads” destroy the lives of many subjected to the “fads”.
    If certain States decide to get together that is the States’ business, not that of the Federal Government.
    One shoe does not fit all.

    So that no one will be mis-lead, each President appoints the top Administrator for each Government Dept.
    Top politicians appoint people of like mind and goals.
    These are the OBAMA APPOINTEES for the DEPT of EDUCATION – – –
    http://www2.ed.gov/news/staff/update.html
    (Remember that the Democrats hold both the Presidency, and the Senate required for approvals.)

    For the last 5 1/2 years the head of DoED has been an Obama appointee.
    Here are just a few.
    http://www.westernjournalism.com/exclusive-investigative-reports/obama-surrounds-himself-with-the-most-extreme-appointees-in-american-history/

    • Sorry the last link was in error. It showed just a few of the 38 czars appointed by Obama which is in addition to his Dept Head appointees.

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