Schumann Center for Media & Democracy: Funds Alternative Media, But Invests in Halliburton
Bill Moyers and the Schumann Center for Media & Democracy bankrolls anti-war alternative media groups. Yet the foundation's unscreened stock portfolio includes stockholdings in war profiteering corporations like Halliburton
In 2003, the Montclair, New Jersey-based Schumann Center for Media & Democracy gave a $115,000 grant to The Nation magazine's Nation Institute to help fund the for-profit magazine's What Liberal Media? book project, according to the Schumann Center for Media & Democracy foundation's Form 990-PF for 2003. In 2004, the Schumann Center also gave a $25,000 grant to Democracy Now Inc. "to fund Special 2004 election coverage for Democracy Now" and an additional $250,000 grant to the Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting [F.A.I.R.]/CounterSpin alternative media group, according to the foundation's Form 990-PF for 2004. Among the other alternative media groups that were given grants by the Schumann Center in 2004 were the following:
American Prospect magazine was given another $255,000 grant;
Mother Jones magazine/Foundation for National Progress was given another $100,000 grant;
The Hightower Lowdown was given a $98,775 grant;
The Tom Paine Project was given a $500,000 grant;
The Free Press was given a $600,000 grant;
The Washington Monthly magazine was given a $320,000 grant;
In These Times magazine/Institute for Public Affairs was given a $15,000 grant;
The Independent Media Institute/AlterNet was given a $150,000 grant; and
The Proteus Fund was given at least $1 million in grant money.
In 2005, the Schumann Center for Media & Democracy continued to fund alternative media groups, according to its Form 990-PF for 2005:
The Hightower Lowdown was given a $250,000 grant "to fund program expansion of The Hightower Lowdown in print and on the internet;"
In These Times magazine's Institute for Public Affairs was given another grant of $155,000;
Mother Jones magazine/Foundation for National Progress was given two grants, totaling $170,000. One of the grants was a $100,000 grant "to fund the Media Consortium's multi-organization educational collaboration on reshaping the terrain of independent media;"
The Center for Media & Democracy's SourceWatch.org was given a $150,000 grant;
The Independent Media Institute was given another grant of $135,000;
The American Prospect magazine was given another grant of $500,000;
Global Exchange was given another grant of $140,000;
Washington Monthly magazine/WM Corporate was given a $375,000 grant "toward expansion of Washington Monthly magazine;" and
Media Matters for America was given a $500,000 grant "for general efforts to monitor and analyze the U.S. media."
Besides funding these alternative media organizations, the Schumann Center for Media & Democracy also owned 1,700 shares of Halliburton stock (worth $117,724) on Dec. 31, 2005, according to its Form 990-PF for 2005. The Halliburton Watch group ( http://www.halliburtonwatch.org/) described on its web site how Halliburton has profited enormously during this current "era of permanent war" in U.S. history:
"Under Cheney's tenure as CEO, Halliburton's revenues from federal government contracts nearly doubled... The company became the 18th-largest defense contractor, in terms of revenue, whereas before Cheney's arrival the company was the 73rd-largest contractor.
"Halliburton saw its revenues increase 30 percent to $16 billion in 2003, largely because of its military contracts in the Middle East. Halliburton was the number one U.S. Army contractor in 2003 with the total value of its Army contracts valued at $3,731,725,648. Dan Briody, in his book The Halliburton Agenda, described Halliburton's relationship with Cheney as `the embodiment of the Iron Triangle, the network of the government, military, and big business that President Eisenhower warned America about in his farewell speech."
Besides owning Halliburton stock, the Schumann Center for Media and Democracy also owned 5,900 shares of stock in the Clear Channel Communications media conglomerate (worth $185,555), 3,572 shares of Chevron Texaco stock (worth $202,782) and 2,200 shares of Coca-Cola stock (worth $88,682) in 2005.
The president of the Schumann Center foundation, former Johnson White House Chief of Staff Bill Moyers, was paid a salary of $200,000 by the "non-profit" foundation in 2005, according to its Form 990-PF. The de-classified FBI file of late 1950s and 1960s entertainer Bobby Darin ("a/k/a Walden Robert Cassato") (File #NY25-78569) contains a copy of a November 30, 1964 letter from the FBI sent "BY LIAISON" to "Honorable Bill Moyers, Special Assistant to the President," which states:
"Dear Mr. Moyers,
"In response to the request of Mrs. Mildred Stegall of your office on November 24, 1964, the central files of the FBI were checked concerning the following entertainers: Julie Andrews; Woody Allen; Harry Belafonte, Johnny Carson; Bobby Darin; Cary Grant; Bob Hope; Peggy Lee; Sophia Loren; Barbara Streisand."
Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism Dean Emerita, former Columbia Journalism Review magazine publisher and former Public Affairs Television President Joan Konner (a business partner of Moyers) was also paid $25,000 in 2005 for sitting on the Schumann Center for Media & Democracy foundation board. In addition, Konner also sits on the board of directors of The Providence Journal mainstream newspaper. Coincidentally, the Schumann foundation apparently gave over a million dollars worth of grants to help subsidize Columbia Journalism Review magazine when Konner was the magazine's publisher. In recent years a co-owner and former editor of The Nation magazine, Columbia University Professor of Magazine Journalism Victor Navasky, has also been the chairman of the Columbia Journalism Review. Not surprisingly, very few articles written from a radical left perspective which are critical of Columbia University, Bill Moyers's historical role in the Johnson administration or the Schumann Center for Media & Democracy's investment policies have appeared in The Nation magazine since Navasky began working for Columbia University.
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